I have a truly amazing son. On his own, for his mother's birthday and our anniversary, he purchased tickets for the Broadway production of "Mama Mia!" at the Fox. This gift cost him a great deal of his meager pay and means all the more to both of us.
The music was excellent, and the acting superb. The audience was caught up in the music of ABBA (yes, I did listen to them in the 70's, and I have a cassette tape of them ... so what!), and you could see many singing along. At the end of the play, the actors came on stage and did a mini concert of the some of the favorite songs in full 70s costume!! We had been warned there would be lots of white spandex.
Sally and I decided that we would take MARTA to the Fox instead of drive; it should save time and frustration for the driver. While waiting for the train I began to observe the people around me. Truly a diverse group of individuals. There were people from every ethnic group. There were people with hats and saggy pants heading to some venue in Atlanta, and people in suits and suitcases in hand running for the airport. All these people on one train heading somewhere. When we arrived at the North Avenue Station, we were met by a homeless man (he told me he was homeless) who offered us directions to the Fox and then asked for some cash to help him eat. We passed people, my heavens tons of people, as we walked to find a place to eat. In the restaurant we were placed in the front at the big window overlooking the corner of Peachtree and Ponce de Leon. Oh my, the people who streamed by; again, the world passed before our eyes. People with green hair and no hair. People covered in body art and people not covering their body with much. All moving fast, headed to someplace important.
When we got to our seats at the Fox we were surrounded by hundreds of people. Sally had been concerned with how to dress for the theater for a matinee, but we discovered in 2014 it really doesn't matter. The same people from outside were inside with us. There were suits and cocktail dresses to T-Shirts and baseball caps. The mass of humanity ... the children of God.
Yes, I began to see each one as children of God (sorry, I am a preacher) heading somewhere important and hoping to find some time of rest and peace from the hectic, judgmental world. For a few minutes I saw these people as God sees them. I was blessed to see my family. Oh, to have all of these under the one roof of the Church like they were under the stars at the Fox.
Back out on the street with the masses we moved forward to find our way, and I felt the power of God moving us toward God's heart and open arms for every single one of us.
What a great gift my son gave us! I think he helped teach me a lesson.
Thank you to Julie Boone and the congregation at McKendree for allowing me to preach today in the midst of their stewardship series. Great work, Terri Hoye and Janet Sligar, for planning and bringing forth a great afternoon at the Blue Cell Group Charge Conference Celebration. You all rocked!