I rather like that we mothers are surprisingly adept at reading our brood. Age does nothing to deter us. I’m sixty-two and my mom is still working her magic on me. We have a knack for being annoyingly effective in getting necessary information and reminders into their little psyches.
6am text from me: “Happy birthday, I love you! (Lots of emoji’s)
6:02am text from me: “Oh my bad! I meant to send that to grandma. I bet you already wished her a Happy birthday LOL!” (kissy face emojis)
6:03am return text: Mahmmmmm! U woke me up! (angry face emoji)
Obviously, this skill must be well-honed over time. Technology threw us a curveball, but we caught up soon enough, broadening the possibilities to hit our marks. Occasional failures are part of the learning curve, but we are quick to ascertain new skills, becoming more bothersome as the situation demands.
Point in case: last year my mother kept asking me if I had “watched, the Chosen series yet.” No, I would reply with some lame excuse. A mom with any credibility can see right through that stuff. The trailers looked interesting enough, but I was convinced without ever seeing it, that it was cheesy and ultimately poorly done, a well-meaning Christian effort to shove Jesus down our throats. So, I stayed busy and distracted until she came for lunch one fall day. She asked again if I had seen any of the episodes of the Chosen. I replied, “I had not.” She said flatly, “sit down, we’re watching it now,” and whipped out the DVD set. Moms are good at getting what they want, but isn’t that what love does? It persists even when rejected and discounted, especially when it is good for the person they love.
Maybe you have heard people talking here and there about “The Chosen” series but have never taken the time to check it out. Perhaps you have never heard of it at all. Not to worry, I am happy to introduce you to it and share what I have experienced.
My mom knew, that all I needed to do, was to get past my bias and watch one episode. Being a lover of Christ, it was not hard to convince me after the first episode that “the Chosen” was different. It quickly dissolved for me all the previously held erroneous assumptions. Rather than the starting point of Jesus as the chosen Messiah, this series is about those whom Jesus chooses to follow Him.
They came from various walks of life, personalities, and back stories. What was it like to follow the Messiah that they had prayed for and yearned for their whole lives, and then by chance to be chosen despite their woundedness, imperfections and human limitations?
I have to say, with each episode I am touched in unexpected ways. Some are profound and deep, touching the pains in my own journey of life and faith; while others give me a different perspective to consider. Woven into each episode is the reality of life, both challenging and humorous. What was it like to be in the company of a rogue preacher traveling together with the insecurity of what each day would bring? What roles would each of them play, as the true mission of the Messiah is revealed, and contradicts their commonly held beliefs? For a historical piece it is hugely relatable, because it is our human experiences that unites us. They had the same concerns we do today.
What is God up to in our crazy current age?
Where is God in the suffering of humanity?
What is the purpose of my life, and how can I know His plan for me?
I really cannot recommend the Chosen series enough. Many people I speak with have never heard of it or are reluctant as I was, to just watch it with an open mind and heart. I find that it gives me endless possibilities to meditate on in prayer. It opens my eyes to the immense compassion and love of our God through His incarnate Son, Jesus Christ. Yes, Jesus was true God, but also true man. He got tired, angry, laughed, and danced at weddings. He was frustrated by the hardness of hearts in his time (and ours). Yet He deeply loved and desired to make whole those lost sheep He came to find; to bring them and us today, into right relationship with the Father.
It would be a disservice to diminish them as nothing other than ancient one-dimensional canvases or dusty statues of plaster stuck in time. We share similar stories and struggles. God’s answers and solutions for them are the answers and solutions that we desperately need for ourselves.
The portrayal of Mother Mary is also beautifully played, demonstrating her humility and wisdom. As Catholics we hold our dear Mother in such high regard and rightly so. Like me, she was a woman, wife, and mother. Unlike me, she was the Mother of the Son of God, without sin or stain. However, that does not imply she was without human emotions, laughter, or tears. Immaculate yes, unapproachable and aloof, no.
What mother when she knows her child can do something to help someone will not ask him to do so?
What mother does not feel as her children grow, that they do not need her as they once did?
What mother does not worry nor carry in her heart, pain and sorrow in union with her children? When they suffer, she suffers.
Watch the series. (you’re welcome) It is free. I want to hear what touched you. Don’t be afraid to talk about it and share it with others. Ponder it in your own heart. Support it financially if you are able. This beautiful worldwide means of evangelization is bringing all walks of life and beliefs together and changing lives for the better. What other viewing can we say does that?
Thanks, mom! You knew what was best, and were persistent in sharing this amazing series with us. We are forever grateful.
Note: St. Andrew the Apostle will be featuring select episodes of “The Chosen”, followed by discussion groups. Watch for the details coming soon.
The Chosen, first season