Saturday, October 3, 2015

living outrageously

Last week, I won a contest that I had not entered. As events transpired, somebody who won could not go and asked if I'd like to, and when I agreed, the tickets were posted to my address, and I got to attend the RadioTimes Festival for free. The tickets that I received were for the Call the Midwife talk, and as it is one of my favourite shows, I was terribly excited.

Then I became nervous.

You see, I have been praying for the actors, writers, and producers of Call the Midwife for quite some time. And I realised that the very actresses I had been praying for would be at the event, as would the producer and head writer, for whom I also pray. I knew that I could not let the opportunity given me go to waste, so I prayed for them, received Bible verses, and due to a lack of notecards, wrote the verses on the back of 35mm film prints that I'd taken around my area of London in the past year.

Micah, the other actress on the team, accompanied me to the event in Hampton Court, which is the first time we'd been out of London since May. We wandered around the Palace grounds in the autumn sunlight and prayed that God would give us opportunities to speak to these actors and creatives, and that He would tell us what to say. However, when we eventually entered the marquee for the talk, and I saw that there were several hundred people, I thought that I would not get to talk to the cast. Quite a large part of me was relieved, and when they announced that there would be a book signing at the end of the event and Micah nudged me saying, "We have to go! You brought Bible verses for them!," I immediately grew nervous again.

The part that surprised me most was by who showed up at the signing. The talk was given by Dame Pippa Harris (producer), Heidi Thomas (creator and show writer), and two of the actresses, Jenny Agutter and Emerald Fennel. However, my favourite actor, Stephen McGann (he plays Dr. Turner for those familiar with the show) was not meant to be there. So when we queued for the book signing and he strode over and sat down, I was rather surprised. He is the one I've prayed for the most, and I hadn't expected him to be there. I hadn't made him a card or anything. When we went through the queue and explained to Heidi what we were doing and that I prayed for them, she was surprised and asked us questions, then wrote on a card to me that she was praying for me in return. Stephen asked if I prayed for him as well, and when I said that I did, he was very touched. He even offered to take a selfie with me, which quickly became my Facebook profile picture. I explained to him more of what I prayed for him, and then Micah and I managed to collect ourselves and headed back into London.

It has taken several days for me to wrap my mind around the favour of God in my life. Just a few weeks before, Micah and I had been wondering how God would use us to influence the area of television, which is an area we are passionate about. We pray for actors regularly and try to keep up with what is happening in British television, because God has placed it on our hearts. Then God gave us an opportunity to speak to the very people that we pray for, and we could see the way that God is working in some of their hearts, making them receptive to hear what He has to say. We don't understand what God's plan is for us in this area of society, and God has proven that He doesn't work in ways that we understand. But He is faithful, and we have surrendered our passion for acting, theatre, television, film, etc, back to Him to use as He wants to use it.

It is always an adventure, this life that we live. I never really know what will come next, and I think God delights in that. His blessings aren't something that I deserve. They aren't anything I can take for granted. Sometimes His favour and blessings don't look as exciting as free tickets to see a talk on my favourite tv programme. Sometimes they are in dealing with difficult people, in having to patiently wait for the desires of my heart, in frustrating situations with banks and visas and flight tickets. But they are all a part of His plan, and I've told Him that He can have His way.

Last week, His way was in speaking His truth to some of my favourites in the television industry.

And this week?

I'm looking forward to finding out.

 Micah and me with our free tickets!

 Various free things given us at the festival.

 The Festival was held on Hampton Court Green, across the road from the Palace.

 The panel at the talk, with (L-R),  the interviewer, Dame Pippa Harris, Heidi Thomas, Jenny Agutter, and Emerald Fennel.

 Hampton Court is beautiful.

 The palace on the river

 This was my first time seeing Henry VIII's Palace!

Stephen McGann (my favourite English actor!) and myself.

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