The title of this piece is also our church mission statement. I was reminded of it this weekend when on a retreat with our church Advance group. Approximately 100 18-30 yr olds away from the city, enjoying nature, spending time in worship, making friends, having fun in Lake Geneva (banana boat wipeouts), playing basketball and sand volleyball and even using styrofoam cups or smart phones for games at breakfast.
I’m soooo not 40 anymore
Back to that phrase, “A place of becoming” as our mission statement, we see it every week during announcements. It’s ingrained in my brain but I didn’t connect it to what is happening in my own life until Rosy mentioned it at breakfast this weekend. You see, I’ve been becoming something I never imagined I could become,
Yep. I know, people think I’m creative and in some ways I am. I have a great visual eye, my years in retail taught me that. I love to make a cozy and inviting home. I can make food everyone enjoys. I know how to sew, tailor, follow patterns and choose fabrics but I always consider those things to be skills vs creativity. I know that creativity applies to all facets of life, up to and including engineering and the sciences but skills still seemed to be what I am accomplished in, not raw creativity. Artists are creative and I am definitely not an artist! I joke that I can’t even draw a recognizable stick figure. So becoming creative wasn’t anything I ever imagined or expected in life.
As we made our way into our church community, volunteering to serve we tossed our names into the costume department’s hat and jumped. Singing and sound teams have usually been our avenue of service but the commitment to the choir was overwhelming to me. Bruce decided to avoid sound ministry this time, so making costumes for the various dramatic events our church does seemed a good fit.
Little did we know
I wrote about this effort previously when we were involved in the Story of Love production for Easter but now, we’ve amped up this effort with our Kid’s Week of Adventure production. It’s our version of vacation Bible school and it rocks! Each year a theme is followed, the entire sanctuary is transformed into a new world, actors, singers, writers, directors, designers, makeup artists and moi–seamstresses turn average, ordinary folk into characters from literature and far away lands…
The Shire from The Hobbit
Ancient Japan and a Samurai
And this year,
Alice and all her quirky friends are our challenge. Spread among several of us it’s not too daunting. I have the White Rabbit and White Queen, Steyene with his cape and armor. The Red queen is Maria’s baby, Judy has Alice’s wardrobe, Nancy is our detail diva (glue, sparkles, spools of thread, cut hearts, any and all tiny work), we farmed the Cheshire cat to our daughter Carolyn (crochet hood) and the Red Army and White Chess Men are being engineered by Bruce and team. Heat guns, foam, glue and spray paint will be heavily featured.
Before I go any further I have to tell you that costumes, actors and dramatic productions have been something we’ve avoided at all costs in our household. During the homeschool years we were tempted by the cult of “Christian Youth Theater” but we resisted. We BARELY did Halloween when pressed. For me, if sewing didn’t have a purpose I didn’t do it. Dresses for portraits, holidays and every day wear were my speciality and I loved making them. I’ve even avoided things like window coverings because they require too much math. So to be in the thick of a dramatic production from this angle is — surprising.
But I wouldn’t be anywhere else
What is most surprising is an ability to create. It’s where I’ve learned that there is something in me that is “becoming” something I didn’t know existed. Given a pencil sketch and some freedom I was able to create a jacket out of 2 old jean jackets. After obliterating the John Deere presence on them, tailoring and adding tails, collar and cuffs we now have what I’ve dubbed a Napoleanic Street Rabbit costume…
What’s so incredibly satisfying is these productions aren’t done simply for the production value. They actually reach the hearts of children for the Kingdom. There is tremendous eternal value in what’s accomplished here. Not only are we having fun, building relationships, spending time with other believers as members of an eternal family but these creations will be used to teach truths to kids who might not otherwise know the transformative message of Christ. As our pastor said, “Many of these kids will never have an opportunity to go to Disneyland, so we want to bring a spiritual Disneyland to them”.
I cry a lot at church these days, I don’t know why I bother with makeup. It’s borderline embarrassing. I can’t help it. I’ll assume it’s because,
I am becoming