If I'm being 100% honest with you I originally had no plans to see this movie. Although I really love Hillsong, I figured it would be something like a musical, and musicals aren't really my thing.
After hearing a friend rave about how amazing this film was and sharing all the take aways she got from it, I had to see for myself - and man was it good! I thought I'd share a few valuable lessons I got from Let Hope Rise that I hope will be as much of an encouragement to you as it was for me.
1. Do not despise the days of humble beginnings.
In the beginning of the film, Hillsong senior pastor Brian Houston reflects on how Hillsong church began. They started in the smallest space that is now an office, and their worship team consisted of a night club singer who had just been saved and a drummer who barely knew how to play. Seeing how much Hillsong has flourished since then was enough for me to leave the theater encouraged and fully inspired 10 minutes in.
2. We should wait on God's approval in everything we do.
Band member Joel Houston speaks about his writing process and how He waits to hear from God with every song he creates. I absolutely love this because you know everything that Hillsong produces is coming straight from God and not from the flesh. If you've ever heard a Hillsong record you can literally feel how spirit-led every single word is. This concept doesn't just apply to Hillsong, this is a lesson for all of us. To be in God's perfect will we should have His approval with every decision we make.
3. Work while you wait.
Waiting on God's approval does not mean doing nothing until a word from heaven falls from the sky. You have to step out in faith and do what you feel God is calling you to do. The Hillsong members work diligently until they create something that they have peace about and is fully spirit-led.
4. God uses the least expected to do extraordinary things.
One line that really resonated with me was when Taya Smith speaks about being a girl from a small country town who was called to lead the world in worship. It reminded me of how God uses the least expected people to do extraordinary things for the kingdom. Never feel like your too inadequate to do something significant. In Christ you are more than enough.
5. Christianity isn't a one-size-fits-all mold.
I enjoyed watching how Hillsong completely redefines what some people believe a christian should look like. They have tattoos, they rock out on stage as if it were warped tour and they have great style, all while being completely sold out for Jesus.
6. The world creates with a spirit excellence, why shouldn't we?!
One of the band member spoke about how secular artist get so creative and produce amazing work, he goes on to say that this is what Hillsong wants to do in the faith category. I could relate to this statement so much because that is our mission for Gracemade. Too often you see things tied in with faith being done in a cheesy or outdated way. We want to change this perspective and do things with so much excellence that we blow our secular competitors out of the water.
7. Your calling may not make you "wealthy" in the worlds eyes, but the purpose makes it all worth it.
It was quite interesting to see that even though Hillsong has sold millions of albums, they all live pretty modestly and don't seem to making much money. The cool thing is, none of the band members are doing this for the money or fame and realize that the purpose of connecting people to God through worship is much more important and makes the job worth it.
8. Nothing will work if Jesus is not at the center.
Joel Houston gets really transparent when he confesses that every now and then he gets the thought of creating music that would bring himself recognition and approval from the world, however he knows that if Jesus is not in the equation nothing will work. This is a great reminder to make sure the things we pursue in life are not about gratifying our flesh, but about glorifying our God.
9. We all struggle with faith, but there's always hope.
There was a moment in the film that highlighted the personal life struggles that the group members faced. I'm not sure why, but often times it can feel like public figures never go through hardships or struggle with their faith journey. It was inspiring to hear that through the tests and difficult moments of life, they were able to overcome with their hope in God. In one scene Taya says she doesn't know how people get through life without Jesus - I don't know either girl!
10. I need to go to a Hillsong show, like yesterday.
I couldn't help but notice how amazing each live show looked. It was almost like a preview of what heaven will look like, all of God's children rocking out and worshipping in unity. Definitely buying tickets the next time they perform in LA, who's coming?!
Have you had the opportunity to catch Let Hope Rise? Share what you took away from the film in the comment section below, we'd love to hear from you!