Sunday, November 2, 2014

Shining in the Darkness

Sometimes, when we ask God to open doors and make opportunities, we forget to expect Him to move. I get so passionate in prayer times, asking God to give me opportunities to influence the secular arts in England, to open doors for me to reach artists who don't know Him, and then, when He opens the doors, it's hard for me to pick my jaw up from the floor.

This week, God opened doors for our team, and some of us went to Sheffield (a city three hours north) to be extras in a film. With only a few hours' notice, we picked out our best party outfits and drove up north for our film acting debuts. We thought that we would just be in the background of a party scene, but we ended up being in another scene, as well, which involved talking to each other in the background of some shots. Seeing the magic that happens behind the camera was a learning experience for me. I never knew how well film crews worked together. Each person was responsible for a specific area, and they did their job, followed orders directly when they were called, and respected other people's work. They also had such obvious love for each other. Best of all, the assistant director who was in charge of working with us was so full of love and enthusiasm for us that I had a great time even while waiting between takes. In the few hours that I was with her, I learned a lot about loving people and leading with gentleness.

As fun as it was to spend a few hours in the middle of the organised frenzy of filming, the best part of the day was probably getting to talk to the other extras. We had six hours between our call time and the beginning of filming, and for those six hours, our team of ten YWAMers talked to the other eight extras about what we do and Who we serve. We got to explain a lot about how God works in our lives to them, about why we do art for Jesus, and to get to know about their dreams and ambitions.

The club where we were filming was full of idols and other symbols of paganism (altars, pentagrams, etc), but we had the opportunity to fill that movie set with God. As Christians, if we have Jesus as our hope, then the people that encounter us encounter Hope. They encounter Love. They don't meet tolerance or blindness, but Grace. That is why we go to film as extras. That is why we intercede and spend time with God every day and worship. We don't do it so that we can be spiritual giants, but so that the Love and Grace and Hope that the world needs to meet can walk onto a film set dressed in party clothes. Love, Grace, and Hope can find them where they are, sitting on the edge of their dreams and forced to face the reality of the emptiness that comes from trying to satisfy the yearning that all of our self-centred dreams leave gaping wide inside of us.

I wish that I could find a way to express how thankful I am that God did not send me into this industry alone. I wish I could find the words to worship God for how wise He is for not throwing me into the entertainment industry without spiritual parents, a family to ground me in truth, a ministry to teach me to form art inspired by God that glorifies God, with no thought to my own fame and success. God sent me to that film set with nine of my closest friends. Even better, we went on the final day of a three week fast that we had been doing. Our bodies were weak, but we spent the day grasping God's hand and waiting for His power to come out of us. There was a moment where I stepped back and watched as our team fanned out to talk to the others about God, and I could see the passion lighting up each of their faces. God's joy flowed from all of them.

On top of all of that, it was one of the most delightful days that I have had in a long time. God has really spoiled me lately. I am always overwhelmed when God makes a dream I didn't even know I had come true. He is such an indulgent Father.