We saw such a fun modern-day rendition of the Prodigal Son at church this afternoon. The Potters Players did a great job.
I thought the props were very creative too.
While waiting for the show to begin, members of the cast threw beach balls back and forth to the audience, and clapped and danced to rock and roll music from the 70's.
We were welcomed by the lady who wrote and directed the play.
The younger brother doesn't want to work in his dad's pizza parlor, and asks for his half of the inheritance so he can travel the world and play air guitar.
The big screen TV on the wall plays a video of the younger
brother boarding a plane and traveling to California in style.
When he gets there he joins a group of wannabe musicians as an air guitarist, and squanders his money on girls and extravagant living.
When the money runs out, the friends do too, and in desperation, he gets a job selling hotdogs on the boardwalk.
He can't sell any, so he gets fired. Hungry and penniless, he dreams of a slice of pizza, and decides to go home and ask his dad to give him any kind of job at all.
Once again we watched a video. This time, of his slow, arduous trip home, walking and thumbing rides all the way.
Meanwhile, back at the pizza parlor, his dad keeps cleaning the window and looking out of it in hopes he might see his son coming home. When he sees him, he runs to embrace him, and orders the kitchen staff to prepare a giant pizza to celebrate.
At first the elder brother is upset, accusing his father of never letting him have a pizza party with his friends, but in the end he also joins in the celebration.
On our way out after the performance, we also got to celebrate with an assortment of bite size pizzas.
Three Christmases ago, a friend gave me an amaryllis that was full of surprises. It had tried to bloom while still in the box, and when I took it out to be potted, the bulb had already grown a withered looking flower. What a disappointment that turned out to be.
The leaves continued to grow for a while, but no more bulbs emerged. Eventually, even the leaves turned brown and died. That, however, was not the end of the story.
Two years later, a new shoot suddenly appeared, and practically overnight, my plant was transformed from dud to four-flowered beauty. (If you are interested, there is a post--Never Say Never--on my picture blog that documents the process and has many pictures).
Eventually the amaryllis plant got top heavy, and no amount of propping or turning it to face the light could keep it upright, so I cut off the flowers and put them in a vase, where they flourished for another week.
Meanwhile, unlike the first time, the leaves never turned brown or died. They just kept growing taller, and taller, and taller, and when I went to water them the other day, there was a third new leaf sprouting up between the other two.
Can't wait to see what happens next.
Attending McGill University was an accomplishment. Academics had not been my forte--especially math, my nemesis--but when our math teacher told me I would not be able to pass the college entrance exams, it spurred me on to prove her wrong. I studied so hard for those exams that even though most of what I'd crammed into my brain was soon forgotten, I was able to retain it long enough to get surprisingly high grades and become one of a very few girls from our school to be accepted by this most prestigious college on the list.
After graduating from McGill, I wanted to further my education and become a speech therapist, but the only school in our area that offered the required training was the University of Montreal, a French university. Up for the challenge, I enrolled in their speech pathology and audiology master's degree program despite my limited knowledge of the language. Graduating with honors was quit an accomplishment.
Being a single mom in New York City was also an accomplishment of sorts. My husband died when the children were seven and nine, leaving them with a mother totally lacking in parenting skills. Nevertheless, despite my well intentioned but misguided efforts, and by the grace of God, they grew up to be adults I can be proud of.
The only other thing I can think of that would qualify as an accomplishment, is writing a memoir, and becoming an author of children's picture books in the winter of my years. It's always been so hard for me to express myself, I never aspired to be a writer, and the way it came about surprised even me. I can only believe that God has a sense of humor, and delights in making the seemingly impossible possible. Nothing is too challenging for Him.
My church is engaged in a 21 days of prayer event. Everyone who wanted to participate was given a journal with a Scripture verse and suggested prayer for each day. Today's prayer was to "Put your situation in God's hands and ask for mercy."
I have many regrets about how much of my current situation is due to the poor choices I've made. I'm also remorseful for how I've squandered time, wasted opportunities, mismanaged finances, and neglected my body. Regrets, however, are futile. No one of us can go back and change the past.
Life may not have turned out the way I wish it had, and there are consequences for my actions, but I believe God can redeem the mess I've made and still use me to be a testimony to His grace so others can see the transformation and be drawn to Him.
Perhaps I'm exactly what and where I need to be for this particular moment in God's plan. Maybe instead of mourning the loss of what might have been, I should be rejoicing that I have been given the gift of what might not have been.
Had I pursued my talents and education to their fullest, and been the best mother/wife/daughter/ friend possible, would I ever have felt a need for the Lord or for His saving grace? Would I perhaps have spent my life chasing after the things this world has to offer, instead of the things that have eternal value? Would I have missed God's gift of salvation, a greater tragedy by far?
Unlike the world, God does not measure success in numbers. If I reach that one person He intended for me to reach, allow Him to use me to bring hope to that one discouraged heart, or lead that one soul out of the darkness and to the foot of the Cross, then my purpose will have been accomplished, and my life not lived in vain. It's all a matter of perspective.
For over a year now, I've been watching our water tower get prepped and rehabilitated.
First all cellular antennas and equipment had to be moved to a temporary tower. Then began a process of soldering, welding, construction of an antenna corral, and finally the installation of an intricate pulley system to pull drape-like tarps up and down (pictures on my photo blog).
It was behind this covering of tarps that the sandblasting and most of the painting took place.
Once the tarps were no longer needed, the pulleys had to be dismantled, so Spiderman was summoned to do the job.