The Purpose of Life
The Purpose of Life Website Ministry
Here's the original 1989 theatrical trailer for Field of Dreams
I love baseball - ever since my Uncle Terry,
who'd moved to Toronto, Canada, introduced
me to the game when I was about 11 years old.
I even got to play for a UK team in about
1991-92 called the Bristol Black Sox. It was
good fun - especially as we won the league
championship that season! I don't follow the
sport now like I used to, but it will always have
a special place in my heart.
I also love the things of the spirit, as this
website testifies - and the movie Field of
Dreams (1989) brings both of these loves of
mine together in a wonderful way. Apart from
the main theme of baseball and childhood
memories, for me this film is full of the things of
I have to say, Americans do nostalgia very well
and this is a good example - a real piece of
American pie. The film is based on a novel
entitled Shoeless Joe by W. P. Kinsella, with the
story having connections with the Chicago
'Black Sox' scandal of 1919.
Warning: Spoiler Follows!
The way that Ray responds in faith to the
voice and the visions, is very similar to the
walk of the Spirit. He is led to various places
and people for specific reasons by divine
appointment, which is all part of a greater
purpose and plan. He continues to be faithful,
a step at a time, against all the odds, even
though he still doesn't know the real reason
for it all.
What he doesn't realise is that 'If you build it,
he will come' is referring to his father, who
appears at the end. In fact all of it was for
Ray himself, because in the past he had fallen
out with his now deceased father, and they
hadn't been able to reconcile before his
The concluding scenes are very moving,
especially for those who have lost loved
ones. The thought of reconciliation with
family and friends is truly 'heaven' - especially
for those who had become distant. The
inmost desires of our hearts are for love,
peace and joy, surrounded by loved ones in
perfection - this is 'heaven', and these
desires have been planted there by our
heavenly Father. Even those who have
experienced abuse or neglect by their parents
still wish it had been different - because deep
in our hearts, all long for real love and
acceptance. (The theme of the movie
Frequency starring Dennis Quaid is also
along similar lines).
This guy, Ray Kinsella (played by Kevin Costner),
is a farmer in Iowa, with a wife and daughter.
One day he hears a voice whispering to him out
in his cornfields, saying 'If you build it, he will
come'. He later sees a vision as well, of a
baseball field on his ground. He eventually
understands that he has to build a baseball field
on part of his cornfield, believing that 'Shoeless
Joe Jackson' (a famous dead ball-player) will
come and play there!
All the locals think he's crazy, as does his wife,
but she still supports him. After the baseball field
is built, months pass with no sign of anything
else happening. But just as they think that
they'll have to destroy the field, to grow more
crops to survive in business, 'Shoeless Joe'
(played by Ray Liotta) turns up, and he
eventually brings along some others too - the
infamous eight men!
Then just when Ray thinks he's fulfilled his vision,
he hears the voice again saying 'Ease his pain'.
Then due to some dreams that he and his wife
have, he hits the road to look for Terence Mann.
Then during a baseball game, where he knew he
had to be, he receives another message 'Go the
distance', with a vision on the scoreboard. This
leads them to someone else and so on. By the
way, acting legend Burt Lancaster guest stars as
an actual historical figure called Archibald
'Moonlight' Graham, and apparently this was his
last film role.
What I find fascinating in this movie is the
interaction with another dimension (even though
they're all supposed to be dead!), where certain
characters appear and disappear - and are also
invisible to some people. This includes dreams
and visions as well, where all time becomes the
Earlier in the story, Ray and his wife had received another message through their daughter and Mr Mann,
that 'People will come'. So at the end of the film, the jackpot is that hundreds of people are coming to pay
and see the field, reminiscing about the good times in their past. So Ray goes from bankruptcy to a
worthwhile, profitable business. So he gets doubly blessed for his obedience and faith!
As a final thought, there's a part in the film where 'Shoeless Joe' invites Terence Mann to go with the
'spirits' into the other world, located in the cornfield at the outfield boundary. Ray protests, because he
wants to go too. But Joe says 'You're not invited'! The one who had built the field and heard the voices
couldn't go! Doesn't that seem a little unfair? Yet there was something better for him personally by staying
behind for a time!
I believe that God has a glorious plan for His creation. Some are invited to play an integral part in the
unfolding of this plan, being chosen for specific tasks along the way, while others decide to reject the
invitation altogether. Nevertheless, all has its place and purpose within the bigger picture. Ultimately, I
believe that we all have a part to play in this grand drama of life, some for noble purposes and some for
ignoble. What part will you play?