[easyazon-image-link asin="B004X4R0VQ" alt="Gulliver's Travels" src="http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51P5kW-wmbL._SL160_.jpg" align="left" width="120" height="160"]Gulliver’s Travels is about a man (called Gulliver) who is shipwrecked onto an island full of tiny people. He becomes the ‘giant’ on the island of Lilliput. At first the islanders are pleased to have Gulliver stay with them and he protects their island for them. However, Gulliver begins to tell lots of lies about his life in America and gets himself into a bit of trouble because of this. There are various ways this film could be used in children’s ministry, as listed below:
Scene 7 for approximately 3 minutes and 30 seconds
In this scene, Gulliver wakes up on the island of Lilliput, having been shipwrecked. He discovers he has been taken prisoner by the little people!
I would use this clip to introduce the story of David and Goliath. Goliath obviously wan’t as big as Gulliver, however it gives an idea of how others might have viewed Goliath, ie big and scary!
The clip could also be used if you are using the theme of ‘giants’ in terms of all how we all have ‘giants’ in our lives, ie things that might be worrying us, things that might seems so big and scary in our lives, things that make us feel very small. God, however is bigger than any ‘giant’ we may have in our lives.
Scene 19 for approximately 2 minutes
Gulliver’s lies have been discovered, he looses a battle to the villain of the film (General Edward) who has created a robot to overpower Gulliver and he has been banished to an island of giants, where he has become a child’s doll! Gulliver is regretting the lies and regretting pretending to be somebody that he isn’t. Gulliver’s friend Horatio, however has come to rescue Gulliver. In this scene we hear Horatio say “How could you lie to us?” and Gulliver replies “I was afraid to tell you the truth because it was just so great being the big shot for the first time in my life”. Horatio replies “snap out of it, you think of yourself as this small little thing but that’s not how I see you!”.
There is some great material here. I would use it to introduce the fact that God gives us second chances. If we are sorry for what we have done he will forgive us. Gulliver was given a second chance to prove his worth and to help his friends in Lilliput, even though he had let them down in the past.
It could also be used in a session about how God sees the potential in us. We may feel small and insignificant and not much use to God, but God often chooses the most unlikely of people to do his work. Gulliver felt that he was no match for the villain, he felt that he had let his friends down, he felt like a nobody, in his words “just the mailroom man”. Horatio, however, could see the potential in Gulliver. He knew that he was capable of far more.
Another option would be to use it to stress that God sees the ‘real’ us. We may pretend to be something that we are not. We may hide behind a ‘mask’, but there is no where to hide from God. He knows us inside out. In the film, Gulliver pretended to be somebody he wasn’t. He pretended he was the president, that he had written films, that he had composed songs, etc, all because he didn’t think people would like him as much if he told the truth. As it turns out, at the end of the film, even though people discover the truth about him, they still accept him and he becomes a hero. We don’t need to pretend to be something that we are not with God. He knows us and loves us just the way we are.
Scene 21 for approximately 3 minutes and 30 seconds
Gulliver is trying to protect Lilliput by fighting the villain ‘General Edward’ who is inside the robot. Despite Gulliver being a ‘giant’ he is still not a match for the tall, strong, undefeated robot. Horatio, one of the tiny islanders, however has an idea and grabs a horse, rides up to the gigantic robot, climbs on and pulls out the electric cable which stops the robot working! Despite the fact that Horatio is tiny, he was the one who made it possible for Gulliver to defeat the robot. Size had nothing to do with it. So it is with us. God will use both the young and old, tall and small to do his work. We just need to trust God and follow his call. Horatio and the robot could also be used to introduce the story of David and Goliath.
Scene 22 until the end of the song
If ever you are doing something about the importance of peace and not war, or even the ten commandments (in particular “do not murder”) or maybe even the fact that we should love one another, this film ends with a great song and dance, about the subject of war and how pointless it is.