the desperation for a happy ending

“The presence of conflict does not mean there is to be no peace…
Peace is God’s presence within that conflict…”

(the paraphrasing of a sign as seen outside of a small country church)

(Judi Dench in the role of Queen Victoria in the 1997 movie Mrs Brown)

My father adored Dame Judi Dench.
He was once willing to extend a trip to London just to catch this quintessential
actress on a London stage.

My aunt adored Dame Judi Dench’s haircut and had her hair stylist to cut her hair
just like Dame Dench’s despite the warnings from said stylist—
My aunt was too tall and had a double cowlick—simply not the right shape to pull off
such a cut—and yes, the truth be told, the cut looked much better of Dame Dench
than on Aunt Maaatha.

My son adored Dame Judi Dench in her role as M on the latest series of the Daniel Craig Bond films and was devastated when her character was killed off.

For me, I don’t think anyone has ever quite played Queen Victoria like Dame Judi Dench.

The first time I saw her playing the perpetually mourning monarch was in the 1997 movie Mrs Brown.

I had previously read the book The Empress Brown…a book written by Tom Cullen and published in 1969.
It is the tale of the life of the bereaved Monarch following the death of her beloved prince consort, Prince Albert.

John Brown was the Queen’s Scottish groom and attendant for 34 years
following the death of Albert.
It has been widely speculated that John Brown was more than just a key figure in pulling Victoria’s life back up following Albert’s death.
There has even been rumor that the two had been secretly wed.

As to whether the relationship was purely platonic or something much more will never
be known–but what is known is that the friendship was a strong remedy for a
broken hearted Queen. The friendship was a great comfort to a grieving Victoria who wore
mourning clothes for the remainder of her life.

Both Albert and Victoria were 42 when Albert died suddenly of typhoid fever.
Following his death, Victoria would continue to lay out Albert’s clothes each morning—leaving them on his bed only to be put away by an attendant each evening.

John Brown was held in great disdain by those closest to Victoria who resented any sort
of influence the brusk Scotsman may have had on the Queen as well as upon
her policy making. Yet the fact remains that John Brown was probably the closest friend
the overtly guarded Queen had during those remaining 39 years of her adult life.

There is a new movie soon to be out that once again has Dame Dench reprising her role
as an aging Queen Victoria.
This time the movie is entitled Victoria and Abdul.
The story based on the relationship between Victoria and an Indian servant,
Abdul Karim.

I read the review offered by our good friend the Scottish Pastor David Robertson.
The good Wee Flea pastor did go to see the movie and offered a more historical and more accurate view of an aging Queen and an Indian servant based on the facts of the House of Hanover.

The script writers, in typical Hollywood fashion, have decided that their take on the historical facts and the relationship between a monarch, who was also the head of the Church of England and her Muslim friend, made for a much better story than that of the actual truth.
Going so far as to even insinuate that the Queen may have even had a death bed
conversion from Christianity to that of Islam.


The good pastor, in his picking apart fact from fiction, references another Hollywood attempt at portraying a historical figure as something ‘other than’ in the depiction of
the Scottish warrior, William Wallace, in the film Braveheart

Whereas the legendary Scottish freedom fighter William Wallace is certainly the stuff of legend and lore, the underlying story of love and loss in Hollywood’s adaptation of the life of William Wallace makes for a much better storyline and movie than the straight
facts behind the man himself.

As I must confess that I was certainly taken by Mel Gibson’s portrayal of Wallace as to this day I often think I catch that most valiant cry of FREEDOM riding in on
an easterly blowing wind.

Yet that’s the thing.
We love a good story.
We love a happy ending.
We actually yearn for a happy ending.

Throw in some rich cinematography, a beautiful musical score and we’ll have bought in, hook, line and sinker.

As we prefer our history lessons to be of such entertaining wonderment.

But contrary to Hollywood, or anyone else for that matter, life, real life,
is not all about happy endings.

We’ve just witnessed such in the latest mass shooting coming out of Vegas.

There is no happy ending there nor will there ever be.
Yet we want desperately to hear of such.

And so our news folks, our media, our politicians and eventually our very selves will
each spin, twist and distort whatever we can in order to assuage the overwhelming and incompressible pain.
There will be continued deflection in an attempt to dodge the very real and very sad
hard truth.

We can pass laws, we can rewrite the events as we distort the facts…
but when all is left open and bare…the truth is that there will always be man…
a fallen and broken creature who makes his (and her) way in a fallen world that is the battleground of both Good and Evil.

Gun laws will come and go, other laws and demands will come and go, arguments
and hateful rhetoric will come and go as we desperately try to stave the literal bleeding….but man, bent on evil acts, will continue to carry out the heinous and
the unbelievable because there is no stopping the Evil that walks
this planet.

There is no Nirvana, no Heaven nor Valhalla on this earth…no perfect place where the people live in some sort of scripted perfect unity and utopia and despite all the laws written and all the regulations passed and all the rhetoric spewed forth…
we can never rid ourselves of the duality of ourselves—
that being both the Good and Evil of man.

That is not to say that we can’t do our best to safe guard our way of life—
but we know that those broken, wounded and lost will continue to carry out acts of
hate and destruction and violence despite our best efforts.
Despite the current finger pointing and ranting.
We can’t rewrite, let alone stop, what took place that fateful day in a garden
so long ago.

No matter how hard we want to rewrite this fact into something other than, into
our own lovely notion of some far fetched happy ending…the only fact,
the only healing, the only saving Grace will be found in the
Resurrection of Jesus Christ—bottom line and end of sentence.
The saving Grace found in the Blood of the Lamb….

And until that fact is figured out—we will live in the middle of a fallen, evil,
hate filled world.

Hollywood and the politicians can’t write us out of that….

“We who are Jews by birth and not sinful Gentiles know that a person is not
justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ.
So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified
by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law,
because by the works of the law no one will be justified.

“But if, in seeking to be justified in Christ, we Jews find ourselves also among the sinners, doesn’t that mean that Christ promotes sin?
Absolutely not!
If I rebuild what I destroyed, then I really would be a lawbreaker.

“For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God.
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.
The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God,
who loved me and gave himself for me.
I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained
through the law, Christ died for nothing!”

Galatians 2:15-21

21 comments on “the desperation for a happy ending

  1. Chris Bell says:

    What a passage!! What extraordinary faith and love for Christ. Placed in a remote corner of Scotland even this one has never understood the mountain of hatred for the ‘Jewish person’. To argue that Jesus was Jewish and condemned by His own nation and therefore ‘hatred’ is of such deep ignorance of that majestic life lived 2000yrs ago. His meaning, eclipsed by Church and State alike is profoundly simple:
    You are not your body. Thus look to Me to know your own true Nature. You are not of this world. Thus you should know.
    And like Christian in Pilgrims Progress we suffer only because we fail to hear His Words and Life and ‘death’. Only out of this ‘suffering’ will we come to know who we really belong to.

    “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.”

    Not Christian, not male, not female, not transgender, not good, not bad………………….but in Him alone. this is our Truth.
    Why does our Church make it so complicated and why is it so confused over the trivia of ego gratification.?

  2. Well said.

    Something that keeps coming up for me amid all the conspiracy theories and panicked attempts to blame the Vegas tragedy on guns,mental health, politics, is that none of that matters,none of that explains anything. The truth is simply that someone chose evil. There is no excuse for it,no explanation, no resolution. Evil is a real thing in the world and someone chose it. That is why we try to spread the good news because in the absence of Him there is simply darkness and evil. The world has forgotten that, we like to believe in reason and our own ability to legislate and control everything. There’s no happy ending in this case because we can’t reason the existence of evil away.

    • Chris Bell says:

      Evil is as real as you choose it to be. We must remember that Gods Kingdom is within us and beyond the distorted mind. You are not what you think yourself to be. You are in Him. It is the body-centric mind that tries to tell everybody that they are of form and form is reality. This is the original evil…..sin. And if the Church would teach properly all would know the real significance of Adam and Eve. Why did they hide??????? from Almighty Spirit?????? A broken mind such as this one in Las Vegas should teach us that we are not anything that passes over our minds. Remembering and remembering our true nature in Christ. ….The Heart is our refuge in all times and all places………..thus it will kill ‘evil’ in ourselves and in our ‘world’. This Heart is His Grace and it is ours in Him. Evil cannot be reasoned away because the mind that would reason is the culprit just as the thief that pretends to be the policeman tries to catch the thief.
      Christ enjoins us not to simply believe but to enquire and really ask ourselves of our true nature else we waste our lives.

  3. says:

    I refuse to let this overtake me. Though it is a most horrible event, of which we seem to be coming accustomed to, we as Christians still have the hope that Christ came to save the entire world – all sinners, of which I count myself the greatest. We must stop dwelling on the negative and push forward with that truth, otherwise the entire crucifixion and resurrection were for naught. The world is an ugly place where demons continue to flourish, but Jesus reminds us that He is not of this world and neither are we. This might sound Pollyanic, but I believe there are still many of us who believe that God is still with us and He will heal our nation if we call on Him again.

  4. Citizen Tom says:

    Whenever something worthwhile comes out of Hollywood, that is cause for celebration because it is such a rarity.

  5. Hence why I can’t tell you the last movie I’ve seen as it’s been years since I’ve been to a theater and very rarely will I watch something out on dvd— but that was Hakesaw Ridge with my dad because he wanted to see it before he died— and we honored that wish and it was really a great film.

  6. oneta hayes says:

    Happy endings. Only true for the Christian, and that only when the last ending has come. Until then, some happy, some sad; all temporary until the final one. A big “Yes, Lord, Yes,” for that last one.

  7. Amen and amen! 🙂 ❤

  8. SLIMJIM says:

    Sounds like an interesting movie…a happy ending can be quite elusive on this side of eternity…unless there’s something more afterwards.

  9. Chris Bell says:

    In the life of the ego, that is individuality, there are no happy endings by definition. In all struggle it is the ego that must and will get smaller and die…..this is the nature of His ordinance. Where ego is large suffering is great where ego is small suffering is less. Do the math, and read again the Bible, enquire, ask.

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