Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Is anybody listening?

So here's the thing that's been on my mind, in my heart...percolating in my spirit. Prayer. Prayer. Prayer. This I know, that when I just get in the presence of God- just to hang out- that's when things start to move with power. And that is what I want to see....moving in power. I know in my own life, I don't make enough time for that sort of prayer. The kind where you just have to press in and wait. Sometimes, waiting takes a long time. Sometimes, nothing comes except for just hanging out with God. And that's okay. But I am digressing from the point I want to make. And it's this. We spend a lot of time in prayer just talking. Talk, talk, talk. Request, request, request. Gimme, gimme, gimme. Jabber, jabber, jabber. What if we stopped? What if we stopped talking? What if, knowing that He is God, we were still and just listened? I know that's a personal...goal...whatever....for me. I know that I had a really good "soak" yesterday and that I need to make it more of a priority. And during that soak, I was praying for the "church"- my church, the whole church...praying about corporate prayer.

What would happen to a group of leaders who sought the presence of God without an agenda? What if prayer wasn't a grocery list of prayer requests?
Perhaps, instead of asking God to bless what we do, we could listen and find out what He is doing and help Him with it, perhaps that would produce a whole lot of fruit. Perhaps we would find wholeness, healing and freedom. Perhaps...if we would be still, make time and listen.

I've been reading Revelation- and I know, it's a goofy book. But it's really one of my favorites. I find it hopeful and alarming- particularly the bits about being lukewarm or thinking you are alive when you are actually dead....yikes. When Jesus is talking to the churches, warning them, He says the following every time:

He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.

He says it seven times, to seven churches. And I wonder, with all of our talking...is anyone actually listening?

Friday, August 21, 2009


As usual, August is a bit of a crazy-land.

I went to Iowa at the beginning of the month to surprise my mom for her 70th birthday. She was very surprised and we had a nice visit. When I got back, work was crazy, of course.

We have the usual convergence of insanity that we do every August here at Camp Taproot. The mainstage show usually extends, which means extra weeks of laundry and maintenance. The studio is going full swing so there are dozens of children running amuck around the theatre. We're working on three Road Company touring shows (plus remounting one of the old ones to go to the New York Fringe Festival- they are there now) and building 20+ dresses for Enchanted April. As if that weren't insanity enough... My cutter/draper- the woman who has run the builds for shows for the past year, pulled the day before the build started. She got a better paying job at one of the bigger theatres. We're a small non-profit, I can't compete. So I put my best stitcher in that cutter positon (so I lost my best stitcher as well) and hoped for the best. We have a couple of our usual gals that are stable and I hired a couple of new gals, one is great- the other I had to let go. She didn't take it particularly well, but I just do not have the luxury of time to teach people how to sew on this show. Yesterday, I hired a new gal that I think will be AWESOME...so eventually, I am sure I'll lose her as well, but for the time being, I am thankful. Work feels like swimming through mashed potatoes lately. Everything meets with resistance. I go to order some items online, the store that was there last week has dropped off the planet. I go to exchange some leggings at the mall- the store that I bought them at two weeks ago...dropped off the planet. Ah. The economy. Just all sorts of little things going wrong- I'm not even surprised anymore. Although, I confess that I was surprised when one of the actors in the current show bleached his hair without permission while I was in Iowa. Dark hair...turns orange. He did it because the white he was putting in his hair "didn't show up enough." It did. Now he looks a bit like an orange skunk. Sigh. But life goes on. It's been an unusually hot summer too. That hasn't helped. The airconditioning units at the theatre have been working overtime and freezing over periodically (which requires one of my coworkers to get on the roof and thaw them out with a hairdryer- how's that for fun?) and the server room, which is attached to the costume shop has been way overheating. So we have to leave the door open so the servers don't fry and then it's at least 80 in the shop. But it's been better this week- the IT guy took one of the servers out of the room that we suspect was the main culprit. It's been a crazy summer. It's August. It seems that no matter how organized I am, no matter how much I frontload things into July, no matter what I do...August is always just CRAZY, CRAZY, CRAZY. Thankfully, there's only 10 days left. Sweet fancy bananas and Hallelujah for that.

And our neighborhood has also been a little crazy. Last week (was it only last week?) there was a huge watermain break that flooded the block in front of the theatre about 45 minutes before a performance. Thankfully, it did not flood the theatre at all. (Amazing) A few days later, a house a block and a half away burned down. Apparently, there's an arsonist in the neighborhood. Ah, yes.

On the spiritual front. Hmmmm. Boy. Wow. I got A LOT going through my mind right now. I am still struggling, trying to clear the "planks" out of my eyes so that I can see clearly. I miss church. But I don't want to go. I think I miss the idea of church more. As far as the reality, I am disappointed and deeply troubled about what I see- what I see in "reality," what I see in my dreams, what I see in my spirit. Still mulling it all over. Still praying. I found a great passage of scripture in Daniel where he calls upon the Lord- Not because of our merit, but because of who You are Lord- have mercy- or something along those lines- something about a desolate sanctuary- it's a beautiful prayer. It reminds me that we cannot appeal to God on our own merit- we've done nothing that worthy- it's just ALL Him- grace, mercy and forgiveness. And I know from my own experience that sometimes He gives us exactly what we think we desire- so we'll learn. The hard way. Huh. But I know that I am still not interested in "playing church" or "doing church"- anytime that church usurps relationship with Christ- I get very nervous. And I am very nervous right now. But I also know that God works all things together for good. Proverbs talks about if you have no poop in your stable, you have no productivity- so there you go. I believe God is bigger and He will win. And for now, that's all I've got to say about that.

Back to the insanity. 10 days to go.