Thoughts on War Room

What did I think of this movie? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

If you’re wondering about last week, I was away in Atlanta visiting my in-laws. I had a hard time connecting to the site with my wife’s laptop so I thought “Forget it. I can go a week without. I’ll just focus on my family.” That’s what I did. Right now, it looks like things are back to normal as we’re back home in Knoxville again and the first subject I want to talk about is a movie that we went to see with Allie’s parents and that’s War Room.

It’s no secret that Christian movies lately have been really cheesy. Most filmmakers of Christian movies have this idea that your audience is really stupid and think that if we are going to make this a Christian movie, we must somehow shove the Gospel right in your face because that’s the only way that you’re going to get it. War Room is certainly a step up and what I thought to be an excellent Christian movie. Does that mean I agree with everything? No. It only means that the parts that I favored stood out above the parts that I did not.

The movie involves the story of a real estate agent helping an elderly widow move out of her house. The widow shows the real estate agent all the rooms of her house and then points out eventually what her favorite room is and calls it her War Room. It’s a room where there are prayers and Bible verses written on the wall. In fact, it’s hardly a room as it really is a closet. The widow then begins talking to the real estate agent, Elizabeth, about her marriage and what she needs to do to win back her husband Tony when they are in a terrible place in their marriage. Elizabeth is also reminded that she can’t be the one to directly change Tony. She needs to work on herself. In this way, the movie also gives some great marriage advice.

Elizabeth is encouraged to develop a prayer time, though we can all relate when the first time she tries her daughter and her daughter’s best friend interrupt her lounging on the floor drinking sprite and eating chips. Most of us don’t start out too well. Still, she keeps going and she gets better and better and her daughter soon follows suit. Probably the only scene that I didn’t really think was fitting was Elizabeth after praying hard and realizing a problem in her marriage starts yelling at the devil and telling him he’s not going to have her marriage or her husband.

I find this problematic because I really don’t see anything in the Bible telling us to get into a shouting match with the devil and also too often we treat him like he’s omnipresent and can hear everything we say. Yet even if demons aren’t directly involved, I think in every marital destruction we experience the work of demons in the long-term, not as if they directly caused it, but it has been the work of the devil from the beginning to destroy the things of God, including marriage, and that destruction to today continues. Even if no evil entity ever tries to act on your marriage, you can still feel the effects of that from other marriages. (Our divorce culture has given us the idea that giving up or abandoning one another is okay for any reason and just fine for a Christian. That affects Christians who have no desire to divorce either.)

Elizabeth instead keeps changing around her husband and yes, this change gets her husband’s attention. She does not give back sarcastic answers when tragedies strike and she seeks to respect her husband. Men respond to this. After all, we crave respect and we go where the respect is. I found myself smiling at her actions in that I knew that she was reclaiming her marriage. What happens then? Well I’m not going to tell you the plot of the movie that far!

And I can also say this had an effect on my life. I’ve seen my wife going through some hard times and I’ve been doing everything in the world for her except seriously seriously praying for her. If you’re like me and wanting to do better, I have some suggestions. First, try to find a quiet place where you can be alone. Second, if you want to be good with time, don’t start off with a goal like an hour of prayer. You’re setting yourself up for failure that way. Set a short time like ten minutes and work up and if you have a device with a timer on it, feel free to use it so you’re not constantly wondering about the time. On my Kindle Fire, I have an app called Mobile Knee. I can write down prayer requests that I have and times those prayers have been answered as well as journal entries and Bible verses that help me.

In the end, I can say I encourage you to see this movie. It is an entertaining and touching film and I can say it made me take prayer more seriously and I “pray” I keep that up. If that was the goal of the producers, it has worked with at least one and I hope Christian movies keep improving like this one.

In Christ,
Nick Peters