Friday, October 10, 2008

Eagle Eye

What drives you?

In Eagle Eye, Jerry Shaw (Shia LaBeouf) is a Stanford University dropout who was always compared to his more successful twin brother Ethan. He really has no motivation or enthusiasm, and goes through life as a corporate drone and oblivious to the infidelity of his friends. That is, until he is drawn into a major drama by an all-seeing, all-knowing computer called ARIA locked away in some government facility deep below the Pentagon.

Jerry is propelled into action only because he will either be killed or detained in prison for life if he does nothing. ARIA calls Jerry (using a very human voice) to tell him that, unlike his brother Ethan, he requires extreme circumstances to do anything.

The action and excitement of the film is great, but what caught me was this understated reason for getting Jerry into this mess in the first place: he cannot be motivated by reason, logic, or passion - but he can be motivated by dire circumstances. He needs that extra "umph" for him to get going. Otherwise, he would sit back and let the world happen to him (and complaining all the time, even though he is the only one responsible for his life's circumstances).

What is it that motivates us? Do we go through life, waiting for someone to entice us into action? Do we wait for events to unfold before we act to do something about them?

There are so many people like Jerry in this world, who wait for the world instead of going out to meet it. Are you one of those people?

So what should we be motivated by? Logic, sure. Reason, definitely. But as Christians, we ought to be motivated by the gospel message of Christ. If we believe Christ is our best hope in the universe, why do we ignore or procrastinate doing what he asks us to do? Why is it that emergencies, tragedy, or major world events are the things that motivate society to do good?

Had Jerry been motivated by other things, how much trouble could he have avoided? If we become motivated by the gospel, how much more can we avoid?

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