Play Your Part

Lord of the Rings

Hobbit Characters – in full costume!

I am so excited because this weekend I will be attending a play with three of our granddaughters  – “Alice in Wonderland”.

I enjoy live theater and especially enjoy a well done play starring children. Our daughters were in several plays while growing up and it was so much fun watching them be transformed into someone else on stage. Children can be so spontaneous and exciting to watch and little ones always provide comic relief.

I have also ventured forth myself and tried my hand at acting. I was in several plays in high school, one in college, and three as an adult. I remember one play I was in called “Quilters”. I was struggling a bit with my lines and asked our daughters to read the other parts so I could practice. They didn’t really enjoy doing this but they humored me. We repeated my speaking parts over and over.

So – that worked real well!

These pre-teenagers memorized all my lines after “helping” me for about an hour. Every line I “dropped” thereafter they called me on it! How humiliating. (I did fine during the play – the one line I messed up – my fellow actress rescued and only my daughters knew)

It is a lot of work  – yet there are many rewards to participating in theater.

One is learning to play YOUR part.

Once given a part in a play, the actor must stay in that role – no matter what. If a piece of the set falls over, one must stay in character and work through the scene.

The show must go on!

Each part is important – even if one does not have speaking lines. Those who work behind the scenes are important as well. What would a play be without the sets, costumes, and props? Not nearly as enjoyable.

It is also important that each person play THEIR part – not someone else’s part.

What a mess that would be if one actor decided they wanted to say someone else’s lines and come on stage whenever they wanted! There is a phrase that describes actors who steal the limelight – it’s called “upstaging”. It means that someone is taking the attention that rightfully belongs to another.

God has given each of us a part to play in His Kingdom.

Each part is important!

We have places to be, things to say – or not to say, actions to take, etc.

God is the author of our lives and the part He puts us in is just right for us.

I have a friend and co-worker who leads the choral music program at the school where I teach. She directs the musicals that our school puts on each year and does an AMAZING job!

I have thought about the fact that year after year she directs different students in different plays – yet the results are always excellent. Linda knows what role is best for each student. It may not be the one who “looks” the part – it is often the one who can “act” the part. It is theater after all. I think a major part of Linda’s success is putting the right student in the right role. That is a true gift.

We may question why God has put someone – even ourselves – in a certain role. God knows what each of us is capable of.

More importantly God knows what He is capable of through us.

I Corinthians 12: 12-21

12 The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. 13 Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit.

14 Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part. 15 If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body. 16 And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body? 17 If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything?

18 But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it. 19 How strange a body would be if it had only one part! 20 Yes, there are many parts, but only one body. 21 The eye can never say to the hand, “I don’t need you.” The head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.”

These verses clearly demonstrate the fact that God has a role for each of us – and that role is important.

If I am a mother – I must be the mother – not the “best friend” of my child.

If I am the grandmother – I must be the grandmother – not the mother when the mother is present.

Lord, help us play the part you have given us by the power of your Holy Spirit.