Last night, I had the opportunity to watch the new movie "Soul Surfer" which tells the incredible story of Bethany Hamilton and how she overcame some extremely difficult circumstances. Here in Hawaii, Bethany Hamilton is kind of a big deal. She's a professional surfer, the daughter of surfers, and if you haven't noticed, surfing is a big deal here. But Bethany Hamilton has become more than a surfer to the people of Hawaii. She is a soul surfer - her heart and soul is what makes her who she is.
When Bethany was only thirteen years old and destined for a successful career in professional surfing, she was attacked by a shark while she was surfing with some friends. The shark took off her left arm just below the shoulder, as well as a huge chunk of her board. Bethany remained calm, in shock, as her best friend's dad tied a tourniquet around her wound and paddled her to shore. By the time the ambulance took her to the hospital and the doctors stopped the bleeding, she had lost over 60% of her blood, coming dangerously close to death. When she recovered and was able to go home, Bethany still had the hardest trials in front of her. I can't imagine how frustrating it must have been, having to learn how to do everything with only one arm and hand, not being able to play the ukulele or guitar, not being able to dress yourself. But for Bethany, the hardest thing was not being able to surf, which is what she loves to do. The movie shows the journey Bethany took learning how to surf again, how she got over the obstacles that stood between her and her passion, how she came back to professional surfing.
The movie "Soul Surfer" captured a key ingredient to this moving story: the faith and trust in God that Bethany has. Bethany's Dad quotes Philippians 4:13 - "I can do all things through Him who strengthens me." Bethany learned that whatever happened, God was the one in control. Even when bad things happen, God has a greater purpose. Sometimes we don't see things clearly, but it's all about perspective. God gave Bethany the strength to surf again. He gave her perspective. She learned that life wasn't just about surfing, that there's something bigger than that. Through all of her struggles, Bethany Hamilton was given the opportunity to reach out to people and tell them of the hope inside her. Her witness was made greater through the hard times.
The movie came off as a little corny at parts, but overall I really enjoyed it. The story is amazing, even if you're not into surfing. It's also a great family film, if you're looking for a good excuse for a family outing. "Soul Surfer" stars AnnaSophia Robb as Bethany Hamilton. The cast also includes Dennis Quaid, Helen Hunt, and Carrie Underwood. Watch the trailer and spread the word! Don't miss out :)