Christian parents are being advised to be ready for a conversation with their children about a movie that opened this weekend that could have them talking.
Love, Simon (PG-13) is billed as a trendy romance – but in fact it's the first "gay" romantic movie with a full-throated Hollywood marketing campaign. This movie was not made for LGBT audiences; instead, it's a subtle message movie for the straight world:
From the movie trailer: "My name's Simon. For the most part, my life is totally normal. I have a family that I actually like, and there's my friends. So I'm just like you, except that I have one huge secret: nobody knows I'm gay."
The story line focuses on how Simon "comes out," or announces to the world that he's gay. The characters are relatable, sympathetic, and loveable. The producers are hopeful audiences will yearn for Simon to be accepted and find his true love – and if data from the Barna Group and Impact 360 Institute is to be believed, many children from Christian homes are ready to get on board in today's environment of moral relativism.
But Pete Labarbera of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality warns young moviegoers to look closely. "If kids could see that this is the product of years and years and years of activism, [they'd understand] it's not quite as innocent as it seems," he tells OneNewNow.
He advises parents, during that conversation with their children, to lean on God's Word.
"We need to really go back to the Word of God and ask our children and their friends and everybody we talk to about this, Who are you going to trust? Are you going to trust this movement which is really built on feelings – or are you going to trust the Word of God."
And to those youngsters who truly love their gay friends, "you need to tell them Look, you can't base your whole life, your destiny on feelings, because feelings lead people astray," LaBarbera offers.
And he quotes a clear warning from Proverbs 14:12 – There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death. (NKJV)
"Thank the Lord," LaBarbera writes, "that we can rise above the culture and its politically correct lies by trusting in God and his inerrant Word, the Bible."
Among movies that opened this weekend, Love, Simon fared third ($11.5 million) at the box office, behind Tomb Raider ($23.5 million) and the faith-based I Can Only Imagine ($17 million). (Stats from Box Office Mojo)