Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Focusing On Strengths Rather Than Weaknesses

During my spring break last week, my friend and I went to go see “Soul Surfer” in theaters. This new movie is based on the true story of Bethany Hamilton, a teen surfer who lost her arm in a shark attack but eventually reached her dream of becoming a professional surfer. It was an incredible movie, to say the least.

One of the many things that I took away from this movie is that it’s so easy to sometimes focus on your weakness rather than your strength – what you don’t have in order to succeed rather than what you do have in order to succeed. Bethany could have simply given up her dream of becoming a professional surfer because of the fact that she lost an arm. But how horrible would it have been if she had allowed that one weakness hold her back from her dream?

I think all of us can learn something from this story. We should quit looking at the disadvantages we have - whether it’s age, height, lack of talent or knowledge. It’s your decision if you’re going to allow that weakness to keep you from reaching your dream.

“You may not realize it now, but your DNA is filled with strength, courage, ability, favor and determination. You are full of can-do power. It doesn’t matter what your current condition looks like… you may not think you have what it takes to succeed, but that doesn't change what God put within you… God has already crowned you a champion.”

~Joel Osteen

If you haven’t seen this movie, I encourage that you do. Bethany was able to reach her dream of becoming a pro surfer, despite the fact that she had only one arm. How? Because she focused on the one arm that she did have rather than the one she didn’t have. Because God was on her side – and she kept reminding herself that she could do all things through Christ who gives her strength. (Philippians 4:13)

"What counts is not necessarily the size of the dog in the fight - it's the size of the fight in the dog."

~President Dwight D. Eisenhower

Have you seen the movie “Soul Surfer” yet?
If so, what’s something else that you learned from it?
Why do you think it’s so easy to focus on our weakness rather than the strength we have in God?


  1. You know what's funny is I read about that girl in a magazine years ago, then i heard about the movie and I'm like "Omg its that girl!" Haha, I really want to see it!!

  2. You should! Trust me, you won't regret it. ;)

  3. Can't wait to see this one! So inspiring!!! :O)

  4. Interesting ..I've read some posts ..very nice ..great inspiration.

    I say that ogniuno of we he has a force point that sometimes we do not know ..bisogna to try it, and at the end we will defeat our weakness.

  5. Hey Tessa! Thanks for following my blog. I looked around yours a little and it's great! I'm going to add it to my reader
    can't wait to hear more about your book :)

  6. I agree, Bethany's story is amazing and very inspiratonal. Everyone, regardless of age, can learn a lot from her story. Thanks for posting!!

  7. Oh I really want to see this movie! I think I'm going with my youth group soon. :)


  8. I've not seen this movie yet but it sounds interesting. Thanks for an encouraging post! :) Have a great weekend,

  9. I really want to see this movie! It looks soooo good! I agree, it has a great message! :) I don't know why we doubt our abilities. We tend to give up when things get hard. It a mystery! :)

  10. My little sister wants to watch this movie. I don't really like "true life" stories all that much.

  11. Katie: You really should. Everyone of all genders, ages, even religions have given this movie high ratings and reviews... it's just that good!

    Shelley: You're right, we have no idea what God could have in store for our future as long as we don't give up!

    Nicki T.: If you see it without knowing that it's based on a true story, you wouldn't even realize it until the end when they show the pictures of the real girl surfing. It's an incredible movie with a message that everyone could relate to, even if it were just a made up story.

  12. I've read quite a few reviews on Soul Surfer...and they were all negative. That is, except yours. :) Not negative in the sense of bad storyline or whatever, but just...I mean, beaches, bikinis...and Bibles? I love Bethany's story and testimony, but I think they could've made the movie a bit more...discreet, shall we say? I don't know. I'm not saying that I'm *not* going to go see it. I'm just not sure yet. :) Glad you enjoyed it, though!

  13. Raquel, I've only heard one other person give a negative review along those terms - however, we have to remember that the audience is focused towards nonbelivers as well, not just believers. Meaning we have to reach them on their level if we want to witness. To me, the movie was real. Bethany Hamilton is a strong Christian and surfing is her God-given talent - but she wears bikinis. There isn't much else to wear besides one pieces, which no one hardly wears these days.

    I understand where the people who wrote those negative reviews are coming from, but we don't want nonbelievers to be turned off by Christianity by thinking that we have all of these strict rules and guidelines. I wrote a post sort of along these lines a few months ago if you'd like to check it out:

    "Soul Surfer" is probably my favorite movie. It doesn't have any cuss words (which is like, the rarest thing these days). I left the theaters feeling inspired by the story, which is what I'm sure many nonbelievers did as well. Ultimately it's your decision on whether you should see it or not, but I very much recommend it. =)

  14. I Love that movie! Tessa!! You should write another post with some quotes from the movie! :) Thank You for sharing! :)

    1. I just watched that movie and couldn't stop bawlling.


Thanks for stopping by my blog!