How do you explain the distinct opportunities given to a select few—to advance in life—from a impoverished village? That’s what God Grew Tired of Us set out to do, sharing the stories of a few gentleman given the opportunity of a lifetime to come to America and build a living. I’m always enthused to see individuals embrace opportunities to advance themselves. Nevertheless, I’m glad I watch God Grew Tired of Us for the perspectives the documentary showed through some poignant moments:
- Move forward and advance, but do so to the benefit of where you come from
As the five gentlemen prepared to leave their village, their interactions with their people were somewhat heartbreaking because they were given an opportunity that the other boys in their village was not given. There was an element of confusion in their calling, but their insistence to move forward and advance to the benefit of their village is what remedied the heartbreak of their departure.
- Our way isn’t everyone’s way and that’s a reality we have to understand
Arriving to America was definitely a cultural shock for the gentlemen–from the technology, to the living amenities, to the typical American foods–their assimilation attempts revealed the differences among cultures throughout the world. Although some of the American ways of operation were seemingly more efficient—shower system or modes of transportation—the gentlemen in the documentary revealed that our way isn’t everyone’s way and that’s a reality we have to respect.
- Sometimes we don’t need to look at the opposite, we just need to look at what is in front of us.
One pivotal moment in the documentary dealt with stereotyping and the fear of Black men, or unity among black men. Frequently, the men would shop in their local grocery store, but at one point their frequent visits frightened the locals. The rhetoric underlying the grocers and locals perceptions is that unity among black men equates to danger. Their actions clearly showed the opposite, sometimes we don’t need to look at the opposite, we just need to look at what is in front of us.
- In our different ways of processing things, we need to be prayerful to the completion of our respective processing of situations.
In the midst of all of the transitioning, one of the guys went missing. Heartbreaking indeed, his missing attests to the fact that we all don’t process experiences similarly and it’s not our duty to do so. However, in our different ways of processing things, we need to be prayerful to the completion of our respective processing of situations.
- We all express our emotions differently; the expression of our emotions is an extension of our culture
Another touching moment was the reunion of John Dau, a main character, and his mother after years of separation. The most touching aspect of their reunion was not the actual reunion, but the tribal sounds and manners in which the mother expressed her joy. We all express our emotions differently; the expression of our emotions is an extension of our culture.
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