Kendrick Brothers Discuss Qualities of New Film ‘Overcomer’

Alex Kendrick shares with audience members about the message of “Overcomer” during a LifeWay Films screening of the movie. Photo by Aaron Earls/LifeWay

Alex and Stephen Kendrick’s latest film “Overcomer,” which is now in theaters, breaks the mold from their previous movies in one important way.

“Every movie we’ve done before has contained a ‘go-and-do’ call to action,” Alex Kendrick said. “This one isn’t go-and-do; it’s know-and-understand.”

Whereas the Kendrick brothers’ past movies called on Christians to increase their prayer life (“War Room”) or strategically work at becoming a better father (“Courageous”), the movie “Overcomer” encourages believers to rest in their identity in Christ.

“Once you understand where your identity is found, you’re in a much better position to fight your battles and go do the action,” Alex said.

The theme of identity that’s woven through “Overcomer” finds its inspiration in the book of Ephesians, specifically where Paul says, “Therefore, be imitators of God, as dearly loved children, and walk in love, as Christ also loved us and gave himself for us” (Ephesians 5:1-2).

“Everything changes for the Christian when they understand they’re God’s beloved child in Christ,” Stephen Kendrick said. “There’s wind in the sails. It’s not just me rowing my hardest to try to live the Christian life on my own.

“Now, when I approach the Father in prayer, it’s not as if I’m a stranger begging for bread from the king who doesn’t have time for me,” he noted. “No, I’m God’s beloved child — a joint heir with Christ.”

The Kendricks say their approach to “Overcomer” reflects the initial chapters of Ephesians, which contain almost no commands for actions.

“Paul doesn’t really tell Christians to do anything in those early chapters except to remember who they used to be,” Stephen said. “But then the imperatives kick in in chapters 4-6. In a similar manner, the goal of this movie is to provide Christians with a better understanding of who God says they are, so they can be equipped to live the Christian life.”

In order for viewers to understand what it means to actually be a Christian, the Kendricks clearly articulate the Gospel in a speech by returning actress Priscilla Shirer.

Shirer plays a school principal in the film and also authored two resources for teen girls that go along with film on the subject of identity: the book “Radiant: His Light, Your Life” and the Bible study, “Defined: Who God Says You Are.”

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Source: Baptist Press