(Photo courtesy of uphe.com)
Q&A: Scott Curlee (Extraordinary)
By Selma Komisky
An extraordinaire is a great way to describe someone who does something particularly well. I think after being married some plus years and seeking the Lord, I am still learning how to be a wife extraordinaire (after all, I’m not perfect!) Although my husband and I have problems like any other couple, what makes our marriage set apart and work is Jesus. Here at Marked Ministry I got the opportunity to preview the Universal Pictures Home Entertainment movie Extraordinary featuring Shari Rigby (October Baby), Leland Klassen (Altar Egos), Karen Abercrombie (War Room) and Kirk Cameron (Fireproof). At the same time, I also had the privilege of interviewing Scotty Curlee who produced this film that is centered on marriage. Together, we talked about putting God, faith, and family first. May you see this film and also enjoy this candid conversation.
What is your message to all the extraordinary women?
Scott: My message would be that you deserve a tremendous amount of gratitude for what you do on a daily basis and that you have an incredible amount of impact on those you come in contact with both within and outside your circle. Your influence has a positive rippling effect far beyond what could be imagined. Thank you for that!
This is the first student-driven film to receive a theatrical release. What was it like to be apart of this film as a producer?
Scott: It was incredibly humbling to be a part of this process of training the next generation of filmmakers with a Christian worldview and to have it release theatrically. Personally, I am grateful to have been able to tell a story about a living legend while doing it with 60 talented film students. Truly, it was beyond my expectations.
How does your marriage relate to the marriage in this film (the good and bad)?
Scott: I also had an identity crisis as an athlete when trying to make the 2004 Olympic Games. My life was all-consumed with the pursuit, throwing my marriage out of balance. Making this movie reminded me of the significance of our marriage vow, and how paramount it is to have our priorities in the right place.
Looking back, no trophy or medal could have been worth putting our marriage on the line. On Dec 20, 2017, my wife and I celebrated 20 years of marriage.
I love the imagery of the perseverance of the runner and the marriage journey. Maybe you can touch base on both?
Scott: There are so many similarities! The journey of an ultra-runner is actually a great representation of marriage. The terrain of an ultra-marathon is varying all the time. There are times when the uphill path is hard and steep, while fast and exhilarating downhill. Regardless of the terrain, we have to keep going. We have to put one step in front of the other with the long-term goal in mind. It is this perseverance that builds character and makes us better husbands and wives.
There are a lot of husbands like the character David Horton who put other things before their wives and family. Unfortunately, it hurts the family. What would you relay to readers regarding putting Jesus first, then family?
Scott: My question to every husband or father would be… Where is your identity?
The bottom line is that we have to have our identity securely in Christ. If it isn’t, we will seek validation in everything that the world has to offer with no satisfaction in the end. It’s like chasing the wind, and the sooner we realize that the sooner we will begin living out our true legacy, the way Christ would have us live. It’s a hard lesson to learn, but we all have to start there. It’s where it all begins.
What advice would you say to prevent couples from not making the same mistake David did with his kids?
Scott: It’s pretty simple for me. Trophies will gather dust, fame and position will fade, and you or someone else will spend whatever money you make. Those aren’t the important things of life.
The important things of life are God, family, friends, and the work that you do to impact the lives of others… in that order. It’s easy to get out of balance, but we have to remind ourselves of this occasionally to make sure we are staying on the right course.
The movie shares the scripture Isaiah 40:31.What does that mean to you?
Scott: For me it’s about the expectant attitude of faith. It’s about the journey and God using the circumstances of life to purify and perfect us to the kind of human being that we need to be. It’s certainly a verse I’ve quoted time and again during my walk of life.
How important in a marriage is making amends to one another?
Scott: Ephesians 4:26 says it all and the quote “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me” isn’t true. Words can hurt and leave lasting scars. It’s important to work things out as soon as possible and restore hope and love within a relationship, especially within a marriage. Having the courage to apologize and make amends is an important part of making a marriage go the distance. Don’t let pride get in the way.
The character of David Horton makes a decision to go along with what others wanted instead of what his wife wanted. How important is communication in a marriage relationship?
Scott: There is a difference between hearing and really listening. What we need to do is to be better listeners while being open and honest in our communication.
It’s about being able to communicate what we need to in the way it needs to be communicated to our spouse so they truly understand. We have to make the effort and be intentional. Then our spouse needs to make the right choice(s) for the relationship. Without that, we won’t have the opportunity to flourish in marriage.
The Bible says in Matthew 6:21, “Where our treasure is, there will your heart be also.” How can we make our spouses our treasure?
Scott: That’s a GREAT verse and we have to remember WHY we fell in love with our spouse in the first place. What was it that first attracted you to your spouse? What qualities did you love the most about them? That will help us to get back to the basics of why we fell in love in the first place. Start there, pray for them daily and make small gestures of kindness. It will grow from there.
Find more on Extraordinary at extraordinarymovie.com