I can hardly think about all the people I pass by everyday who aren’t saved.
In my Theatre class, we’ve read a lot of plays and I’ve already had more opportunities than I want to say, “No, sorry, I can’t be involved in something this bad.” It amazes me the lack of redemption in some stories they perform. They call it entertainment. I call it spiritual destitution.
Theatre is a beautiful art form, and it can glorify God in brilliant ways. Showing stories to people has a way of affecting them more than just telling stories. Yet most theatre is twisted into such ugly things. Even the good plays have swearing and situations that are not pleasing to God.
Some people have a heart for certain groups. Maybe someone has a heart for African orphans. Another has a heart for inner city teens. Another has a heart for the elderly. I have a heart for actors. For one thing, I am one. I know what it is to act. I know what it is to take on another persona and portray it believably. I know what stage directions are, and I can make up snazzy metaphors about the parallels between life and the stage.
I don’t do a lot of all-out ministering. But I need to realize that theatre people notice when I don’t swear, or when I refuse a big role, or when I have to walk out of a production. I feel bad for telling these people I want to be in their productions and then having to leave, but I have to remember that God is more important than any theatre production, or any theatre-person’s opinion.
One time as I walked home after leaving rehearsals for a trashy play festival (note: leaving for good), barely biting back the tears, I didn’t feel strong. I felt weak for leaving my responsibility which I had promised to do.
I couldn’t shake the guilt of leaving. They didn’t know. Those people I left behind didn’t know why I left. They didn’t know how amazing and beautiful God is, and they didn’t know how amazing theatre could be if we used it to glorify God. I didn’t tell them- I could barely keep my tears back long enough to ask if I could quit.
That didn’t feel like strength. But it was, in a way. It wasn’t physical strength, or even emotional strength. If it had been emotional strength I probably wouldn’t have cried for the next two hours. It wasn’t even strength from me. It was God, giving me strength to walk out of that room. To tell those people I couldn’t. To stick to my standards. To open that door and leave behind an opportunity.
I hope my actions spoke to those people. I hope they wonder, even for a second, why I had to leave. I hope they realize that I left because there’s Someone out there who’s more important than theatre. I hope they see that I’m not acting for myself. I’m acting for Him.
Colossians 3:23-24 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.