As a kid, watching Toy Story changed my life. I mean me and my toys lives. It only took watching it once to convince me that when I wasn’t in my basement, all of my toys came to life. Thinking this made playing with my ninja turtles that much better as their secret lives were not so secret to me anymore. Sadly enough growing older and realizing this was not the case only made me want it more. Who wouldn’t want a pocket sized Batman running around their house in the dark of the night?
Setting aside my childhood, Toy Story is based around a young boy named Andy, who absolutely loves his toys. While Andy is playing with his toys, they are just toys, but when Andy isn’t around they come to life. His favorite toy is a cowboy named Woody. This quickly begins to change when Andy gets a new space ranger named Buzz Lightyear. Buzz, being new to the toy world, is not aware that he is a toy instead of a flying space ranger. The movie is based around Woody working out his jealousy of Buzz and Andy’s new relationship, and Buzz realizing he is just a toy.
Towards the end of the film Woody is trapped under a crate at the neighbor’s house and Buzz, after just realizing he is just a toy, is the only way for both of them to escape. As Buzz is broken and sad, repeating that he is just a toy, Woody begins to encourage him with the fact that there is a kid next door that thinks he is the best ever. Buzz asks the question, “Why would he want me?” Woody says something that caught my ear. He begins to say that it is not because he is a Buzz Lightyear but because he is a toy…his toy. Just as Andy loves a toy because it is his, our God loves us because we are his. Colossians 1:16 says, “ For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.” Just as a toy is created for a kid, God’s word tells us we were created by God to be for God.
Imagine you’re a toy in a store. You’re sitting on a shelf, with no purpose because you weren’t doing what you were created to do…being played with. But right when you are bought you have purpose. Because you are now someone’s to be played with. Your mission as a toy is to bring some kid joy. In the same exact way, before God is brought into our lives we are living with no purpose, but the moment we choose to accept how God bought us through Jesus, we gain purpose. Our purpose simply put, is to bring God the Father joy by just being his, in a relationship with him.
Sometimes it’s hard to believe that God just delights in us being his. We get caught up in what were doing and think that God’s view of us in this relationship is based solely on what we are doing. Let me tell you that is not the case. In Luke 3:22 God speaks to Jesus after he is baptized and declares, “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” Let me remind you that God says this to Jesus before he has even started his ministry. If you have accepted Jesus’ life as your own, as he intended you to do, your relationship with God is based on the way that God looks at his son Jesus. God loves you and is well pleased with you for simply choosing to be his.
When we choose to be his in this relationship, we are not only marked like all of Andy’s toys are with his name, but we are friends of Jesus (John 15:13-15). Randy Newman’s iconic theme song for this movie, You’ve Got a Friend in Me, is not only catchy but deep as one friend confirms his love for another friend. So let Randy Newman’s ending lyrics of the song be from a friend to a friend, from Jesus to you.
“But none of them will ever love you
The way I do, it’s me and you, boy
And as the years go by
Our friendship will never die
You’re gonna see it’s our destiny
You’ve got a friend in me
You’ve got a friend in me
You’ve got a friend in me”