I was just going down the streets where I live and looking at all the signs and billboards where I live and a shocking thought to me. It seems like we are living in Pottersville, instead of Bailey Park. In case you don’t know what I am talking about, there is a movie that came out, I think it was 1946, with Jimmy Stewart, and Donna Reed in it, called “It’s a Wonderful Life.” It is a Christmas themed movie and many shows have done their version of it. In this story we find a man, at the end of his rope, everything lost and he is about to jump off the end of the bridge, and commit suicide because his Uncle Harry has misplaced a large part of the money that belongs to Bailey Building and Loan, the bank, which George Bailey inherited and was voted in when his father died. Before that George had big dreams. He wanted to see the world, and travel, and have an impact in the world, and yet he was stuck in this town and every time he could have a chance to get out something happened.
So this man is about to jump off the bridge, and what the audience knows is that his “guardian angel” Clarence Oddbody, was watching his life, and trying to prevent him from committing suicide, because he knew that he had a great calling on his life. So he jumps in and he rescues George by having George jump in and save him. So the story goes that Clarence goes through a hard time trying to convince George that he was his “guardian angel” and was sent to rescue him. George is still depressed and says, “I wish I was never born.”
Before I go too much into the story, I want to tell you about a man named, Mr. Potter, who is the greediest, most cunning, man with no scruples, and he is the head over the main financial transactions of the city. Mr. Potter is actually the one who stole Uncle Harry’s money when he saw him at the bank, but no one knows that, and I don’t think they ever find out. Mr. Potter is actually in a wheelchair, but for his disability he seems to have a lot of power. Anyway this man has a lot of control.
So when George says that he wishes he was never born, the guardian angel asks permission and grants his request to make it seem like he is never born. So this would be a strange experience for anyone. Imagine everyone can see you and talk to you, but it is like you don’t even exist, and you have no history, and everything you have ever done does not exist, and everyone you ever knew does not know you. This is what happens to George Bailey.
While George is going down the streets of the whole town, where he was raised, brought up, lived, and had the most impact, there seems to be signs of nightclubs, and other vile and decrepid, and debased places, which were nothing compared, to the friendly, nice hometown that he was raised and brought up in. The town is actually called Pottersville after this alternate reality, and it is rampant with the debasement of society. Everyone is after his or her own interests and they are going their own way. They don’t care about anyone, but themselves.
This brings into the aspect of towns and cities like Sodom and Gomorrah, and the times of Noah, where everything was pretty much corrupt, and debased, so that God felt regret, and He wanted to destroy the places, and even the world in the case of Noah, but because of the few righteous people He saved the land. Abraham was actually negotiating with God about the people in Sodom Gomorrah. He started with I think it was 50, and he then negotiated until it was 10.
In the movie, George Bailey, was eventually taken back to reality, and realized, that he loved his life, hence the name, “It’s a Wonderful Life”, and the impact he had on others and that money was not the center of everything, and that even if he had to go to jail, he would still love to be life, because he realized that at least he had friends, and those friends showed him love that was unconditonal. In the end they all gave him money from all over and he became the richest man, and that was because he knew he had friends and that God was watching out for him. Similar to the story of Job if you think about it, except Job’s friends were not good for him.
If we take a look at the life that we have now, is it more close to Bailey Park, or to Pottersville? Especially with the economic collapse, we are seeing more and more Mr. Potters. We are seeing more and more debasement of society, and if you don’t believe me just check aol or yahoo news. So what is the answer? It definitely isn’t Occupy Wall Street. That definitely isn’t going to get anything done. The crowd is never the best option. So what is the best option? It may be too late because we are living in the last days, but we as believers should shine the light of Christ, and really be true examples, of what we need to see in life. There is Matthew Hagee, the son of John Hagee, who has a remarkable concept, in his teaching, which I haven’t bought yet, is RESPONSE ABLE. He basically has talked about how the Church has to play a more active role and reach out to the community and make a change. We need more George Baileys and less Mr. Potters. The interesting thing about George Bailey was that he was not Mother Theresa or flawless, but he had his small impact on the community. He showed everyone love. Now I don’t know in the context of that movie, whether he was born again or not, but even the selfless acts of people can make a difference. We need more pay it forwards, and less pay myself.
Sometimes the Church makes the mistake of taking time to spread the gospel, and sell their teachings, that they don’t realize the real impacts of the broken people of society and that sometimes you have to reach to your own community and start for wherever you are. I am still searching for ways with even my own disabled body, I can still be a blessing to people, and in a way that even Christ was, and even the way that George Bailey was, I through the Holy Spirit living in me by the power of Christ, can make difference in people’s lives for the better, because I know it is not I, but Christ working through me.