Today we practiced for our church's Christmas program. Like last year, we practiced in the sanctuary on the "regular stage" for a several weeks. Then the church undergoes a dramatic transformation when they build the set into our sanctuary. Really, it's quite amazing that they do what they do. I love watching it come together. Each year they gather the set that was broken down the year before and move it in and put it together like one giant 3-d jigsaw puzzle. Although it has minor changes year to year the main structure stays the same.
We practiced on the set for only the second time today. As I stood behind a curtain waiting for my cue I was looking over the set. Taking time to notice a few details I don't normally pay attention to. On the back of a wall someone had written LCT 2000 - AWESOME. It made me smile to think of the people who wrote that. The story is just that: awesome.
Some days I get bogged down by the struggle to learn a dance, remember a cue, get all my kids their costumes and get them into them. Some days of practice are great community builders. Some are just gotten through. Some days, I forget that it's an honor to be a part of retelling this Story. This tremendous Story.
This last week was one of those weeks. Doug and I are both just worn out, burnt out. We're ready to be done. And it was with a rather rotten attitude I headed to practice today: the first of 9 practices and performances in 8 days. Getting cranky kids in costume. My body hurting from past weeks of dance practice. My emotions torn between my commitment to the show and my baby who was teething and wanted Mama.
All this was on my mind as I stood looking at the scenery. It is beautiful. Our set designer and builder does a great job, but that wasn't what caught my eye.
What caught my eye was the red stain on the floor. Over the years the red make-up from the back of the man who plays Jesus has soaked into the stage. I was entering to dance where the cross would soon stand.
In that moment, I experienced a rush of gratitude, humbleness and meekness. My feet would dance where the red stains from make-up had fallen on the stage. The truth is my feet dance everyday because of the blood shed and grace of Jesus Christ. My hope, my joy, my peace are the gift of a red stained road He walked for me.
I am so grateful for the red stains on a plywood floor today. Tomorrow will be another long day of practice. My baby will still be teething, my four kids will probably all lose something and need me to find it in a rush, I will still be tired, but I will be dancing with a refreshed sense of joy, humbleness and gratitude on red stained floors.