When you watch a movie, you’re seeing (obviously) the final result of a lot of hard work.

A film is made up of several elements: special effects, editing, background music, sound mixing, CGI enhancement, the use of color and lighting, and so on.

These elements are all built on the raw material of the real essence of the film: the actor’s performance, captured on camera.


During the production of a movie, each day’s work is quickly developed, synced to sound and delivered to the director the following day.

These are called “dailies.” The director watches them, usually with the film crew, in order to evaluate each day’s footage, ensuring that there were no technical problems and that the director is satisfied with the scene.

Dailies are typically unimpressive by themselves. No technical wizardry, no background music, no enhanced color — just actors giving their lines and playing their parts.

But it is the dailies that make or break a film. You can spend a zillion dollars on special effects and studio tricks … but if the dailies aren’t good, neither will the film be good.

Life works the same way.

There is a Big Picture, a specific direction you want your life to take. No doubt, you hope it will all to add up to something meaningful.

But a great life can’t be manufactured in post-production. It can only happen in the dailies. If you don’t get it then, you won’t see it in the final cut.

The events of your life may not be that impressive when viewed one at a time. However, it is the discipline you establish and the good habits you practice day-in day-out that will make your life an Oscar-winning epic.

“If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me.” (Luke 9:23 NLT)

Did you enjoy this post? It’s one of more than 500 One Minute Messages by Steve May in the illustration archives of PreachingLibrary.com