One Way

A film about a class of students and their desire to follow directions or learn the hard way!

You may have heard the saying “It is better to learn vicariously rather than through experience” if you haven’t, then what this means is it is better to learn second hand from those who have better knowledge and experience about the topic being taught rather than having to “learn the hard way”.

How about another example? Ever overheard a parent give their child instruction stating; “I am only telling you this so you don’t make the same mistakes as I have”. In this situation the parent has already made the mistakes they want their child to avoid and it is their hope that through repeated instruction their child will successfully avoided these mistakes. But do they listen?

In the film One Way this message is brought out not through a parent / child relationship, but another equally fraught with misunderstandings, that of a teacher / student relationship.

Mr Flint has already walked the path he has set out for his students as the final assessment of their orienteering subject. He already knows first hand where the pitfalls lie along the course, and to ensure their safety he prepares his students with a map to show them the way. In Fact Mr Flint goes another step to ensure they cannot get it wrong. He has taken the trouble of marking out in yellow the only course they can to take in order to complete the course in the allotted time. His final words before they head out on their own reinforce this important message: “Remember, The Yellow Line!” But do they remember?

The real trouble with learning vicariously is that it relies on two parts: One that the learner is a good listener and tries to take note of the message. Two that the teacher is trustworthy and actually has the right message.

God has promised us that if we follow his “One Way” which he has laid out for us, we will live life to the full (John 10:9-10). God’s message is True and he is Absolutely Trustworthy.

The trouble with following God does not lie in the second part of learning vicariously, it lies in the first. Humanity with one exception has never been able to hold up our side of the equation one hundred percent.

Taking the trouble to listen actually relies on the listener’s opinion of the teacher. The student Trevor has issues with respect. Trevor knows best, Trevor can do it his way, Trevor does not take note of the message delivered by Mr Flint, Trevor experiences first hand the unpleasant results of not listening to good advice.

Listing to the Teacher also relies on not listing to other messages. The student Marcus makes this mistake when he chooses to listen to Trevor instead of in the personal experience of Mr Flint. Choosing the wrong direction to follow ensures a less than satisfactory result for Marcus.

Student Cathy Jane, doesn’t listen to her teaches advice for another reason. She is distracted by many things in life. Mobile phones, friends, social status, relationships and general laziness get in the road of her gaining the rewards of this assessment exercise.

Elisa is a student with best intentions, being the keenest of the seven at the outset of their adventure. However over time her cheerfulness fades and when confronted with the difficult realities of the challenging route.

Edbert (Eggie) however is in a league or more accurately a world of his own. Being the class clown ensures that Eggie is permanently distracted by his personal quest of the funniest story or the wittiest gag. The result is that Eggie is only following the right path for the sake of his own personal attention, and when this is gone, he has to seek this elsewhere.

The only student who has firmly the accepted that Mr Flints yellow path as the only solution to their problem is Elisabeth (Liz). However even with this belief she is constantly bombarded with other distracting messages of the others which attempt to lead her off the path she knows is the only way.

William (Will) understands that Liz believes that Mr Flints yellow path is the One Way and as such his own resolve to pass the course is strengthen by his friendship with Liz. However is this confidence in Liz’s faith enough to pull Will through to the finish?

As the remaining character of the film the Teacher Max aids Mr Flint in the transportation of the students but also aids the film by asking the questions we might ask of Mr Flint in regards to the motive behind his setting of such a difficult task.

God has taken the trouble of providing us with map to his plan for us. This map is His Word the bible. Like Mr Flint, God also has also placed his yellow highlighter through it in the form of his only Son Jesus (John 3:16 ), providing us the only way to reach the finish of our course. However God has taken one extra step than Mr Flint to ensure his children make it to the finish on time, he has sent the personal guide of his Holy Spirit who we can listen to every step of the way making sure we are indeed following his One Way.

One Way

 

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