True stories are the best stories. When Darren Turner (Justin Breuning) was deployed as an Army Chaplain in 2006, he and his wife Heather (Sarah Drew) had no idea how it would affect their family. Their faith and marriage were tested, and in INDIVISIBLE we see them fight to keep it together.
Having met in 1999 when Darren was working in campus ministry at the University of Georgia, the pair shared a love for community and helping others. Heather was a recruiter for an organisation that sends English teachers overseas, and Darren had returned from a year teaching English in Mongolia. For six years, they worked on campus together, serving students, while getting married and having 3 three children of their own.
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After finding out about Army chaplaincy through a friend, Darren signed up and was sent into active duty soon after.
In INDIVISIBLE one of the first things Darren’s told by his commanding officer, is that marriage rarely survives a war. A pile of divorce files are thrown on the desk in front of him, and although he’s optimistic about serving the soldiers, Darren’s now acutely aware of the job at hand.
Arriving in Afghanistan, Darren’s confronted by the risks of war and realises that when bombs are going off, and recruits are dying, the soldiers are hesitant to accept his ‘Bible study prayers’ and quotes from scripture. Caught up in a real crossfire, Darren’s faced with his own naivety, wrestling with how to apply his faith in war. Returning home after a 15-month tour, he has to deal with all the things he’d counselled the soldiers about – anger, depression, grief – and in his case, maintaining strong relationships with loved ones.
Central to the story of INDIVISIBLE, is how to build a marriage back up after it starts to disintegrate. The war rattles Darren and Heather’s shared conviction for serving God, family, and country. They each have burdens the other doesn’t understand, and have to decide whether they’ll fight to rediscover common ground.
INDIVISIBLE also unearths a subconscious belief we can hold that when God tells us to do something, it’ll be easy. Darren almost ‘comes of age’ when his campus ministry experience is tested on the battlefield. In the war environment his opinion has to be invited, his value proved, and trust earned with the soldiers. God’s positioned Darren to serve, and he’s clearly overwhelmed by what that really means.
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INDIVISIBLE gets points for being really encouraging whether you’re connected to the Armed Forces or not and avoiding being cheesy in the process. It feels sincere, and any doubts you have about getting lost in American patriotism are set at ease. It’s definitely worth the watch and has limited violence despite the setting.
If you really want scripture to quote after watching it, how about John 16:33: “…In this world, you will have trials of many kinds. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
INDIVISIBLE is in cinemas now
Director: David G. Evans
Main Cast: Madeline Carroll, Justin Bruening, Sarah Drew, Jason George
Classification: M (Violence) Genre Drama, War
Release Date: Thursday, 1 November 2018
Running Time: 119 Mins