Need some help finding God in Finding Nemo? Finding Nemo is a movie about a daddy fish setting out on a dangerous adventure to rescue his son, Nemo. The focus of the story is split. On one hand we watch Nemo and his new friends trying to escape their captivity in a fish tank. On the other hand we have Marlin’s Mission across the ocean to save his son.
What if the focus wasn’t on Marlin, or Nemo, but instead what if we focus on a singe decision of the movie? The entire movie would have been different if this decision was not made.
While Finding Nemo is a cartoon, the decision is one we all face daily. It is a decision of obedience. A decision to flee from sin.
In the beginning of the movie, Nemo is faced with a choice. He can obey his father, and not venture into the Deep Water. Or he can try to make himself look cool to his friends and venture further away than any fish had ever been.
For the sake of the movie, it is good that Nemo chose to swim further away. However, Nemo also sets a bad example for us, as he chooses to disobey his dad, and gets himself in trouble.
Nemo soon finds out that there are consequences for poor choices. Consequences for disobedience. Consequences when we sin.
Romans 6:23. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life
We are a lot like Nemo. We have choices to make— will we obey? Or will we choose to disobey, thinking we know what is best for us?
- Cheat on a test?
- Be mean to the new kid at school?
- Steal money from mom’s purse to buy an ice cream?
Nemo made a poor choice, and chose to disobey his dad, and swam further and further from safety. Then the unthinkable happened- Nemo was captured by a diver. That is a sad consequence of his disobedience.
There are also consequences when we make poor choices- when we choose to disobey. If we cheat on a test, not only are we not learning, but we will fail the test, maybe more.
If we are mean to the new kid at school, maybe people will start being mean to us? Or maybe you will get in trouble for being a bully.
Stealing from mom will get you grounded, but even worse, you will lose her trust.
Our similarities with Nemo don’t stop with our disobedience. The Diver was waiting to take Nemo away from his father. The devil is waiting for us, hoping we disobey so he can try to lure us away from our Father.
A good portion of the movie was about Marlin, Nemo’s dad, leaving the comfort of his home and risking his life over and over in an attempt to save his son. He gave up everything to save Nemo.
We have a Heavenly Father who gave everything to rescue us as well. God gave his son, Jesus, to die for us. Jesus left his home in heaven to come to earth, not to risk his life for us,but to give his live for us. Through his death and resurrection, we can find forgiveness from our sins– our poor choices– so we can live for ever in heaven with him.
Jesus tells us a story similar to Nemo’s.
“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.”
Luke 15:4-7 NIV
Just like Marlin loved his son and wanted the best for him, and wanted to rescue Nemo, God loves each of us. We are like the one lost sheep. We are so valuable, the shepherd would leave his flock to find us. He loved you so much, he came up with a way to rescue us…..how much does he love us you might ask?
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”
John 3:16-17 NIV
Jesus did that. He left heaven to come to earth because he loved us so much. Marlin swam the ocean to find and rescue Nemo. Jesus left heaven to find and rescue us.
Parents- after watching the movie, take the opportunity to talk to your kids. Some help for Finding God in Finding Nemo
Discussion starting questions:
- Why do you think Nemo disobeyed his dad?
- Do you think Marlin wanted to find Nemo to yell at him for disobeying?
- Have you ever disobeyed? (This would be a good time to tell your kids of a time you disobeyed)
- How do you think Marlin and Nemo felt being separated?
Does your family enjoy Disney Movies? Check out a Messages from Monsters, a teaching series based on Monster’s Inc. and Finding Story based on Finding Nemo. Each includes lessons, suggested video clips and discussions, family devotions, object lessons and more.
Are you looking for more great family devotion resources? Check out an Amazon #1 best selling children’s ministry book: Got Fruit: a guide to family devotions based on the fruit of the spirit.
Your child’s relationship with God must extend beyond Sunday morning. Parents have to take a leading role in the discipleship of their kids. Based on the Fruit of the Spirit, Got Fruit? is an effective tool to help parents disciple their children. If you are looking for help with your family devotion time, click here– Got Fruit? is for you! Through this devotional you will be guided through discussions that build on each of the 9 fruits of the spirit. Each of the 9 devotionals include bible passages that highlight the highlighted fruit as well as a few related thoughts. Also included is a series of discussion questions that will help you guide your children in a conversation to bring truth and understanding. This short devotional is a perfect tool to guide you as you disciple your children into a deeper relationship and understanding with God.