So this past week has been entirely crazy. I had promised myself that I wasn’t going to write about my experience on Good Christian Belles any more, but after this past week allow me to say a couple of more things about it.
I started this whole thing to make the exact opposite point that it seems to be making. I was doing a series on minor characters in the Bible called “Extras’ and the entire point of the series was that each of us have this incredible impulse to be famous. We live under this burden, given to us by popular culture, that what it means to live a significant life is for our ministries and service to be well-known. But the majority of people in the Bible don’t have the spotlight for long, and sometimes not at all.
Many of the characters in the Bible had no idea that there small acts of service would be told for thousands of years, they were just faithful to what God had put before them. In fact, behind every character that was in the Bible, hundreds of faithful men and women were behind them making them the kind of people they were.
So this past Sunday, the pilot of Good Christian Belles aired. It was the episode that I thought I would be on, and it did not have me anywhere in it. (However, I do think my scene will actually be in this coming week’s episode).
One of my shepherds told me that if John 20:30 is to be believed, than many other Extras have been edited out to. And I think he was more profound than he knew. Think about being around when the Bible came out…your flipping through the pages to find out if that one conversation you had with Jesus, or Jesus healing your grandmother’s leprosy made the cut…and it didn’t.
In the past few days, the story about my going to Hollywood has been run in the Abilene Reporter News, the Christian Chronicle (I wrote that piece) and talked about in a Dallas Morning radio show. Then yesterday I was interviewed by TMZ, none of these were things I anticipated when I was going out there. I was trying to be an Extra for a local church sermon series. And it’s hard to anticipate how people are going to respond to it. (From reading online comments of the articles, I am losing my faith in democracy in general . You can’t control how people are going to interpret it, you can’t control how they are going to respond. In fact, you really can’t control much of anything.
One of the things that I realized about being a minor character I really only truly understood over the past few days. You have no control over the stories that you are going to find yourself in, or how that story will be used (or not used) or told by others. Which is very true of almost every part of life. In the words of Barbara Brown Taylor, we never lose control, only the illusion of control in the first place.
My 15 minutes of pseudo-fame is already over, but I do believe that even this makes the point I was hoping to make with the series. You never know what the next left turn your life is going to take. All you can do is try to remain faithful (however that looks) for the context you find yourself in. Because it just might mean that God has raised up this opportunity for such a time as this, or it may mean that you have another opportunity to “live such quiet lives” among your neighbors, friends and enemies in a way to show how good and loving God is.
And both are just as important.
Tomorrow I think I’m going to try and post the interview I did with TMZ, I doubt they use it because it’s pretty preachy (after all that’s what I do), but even if they don’t I’d like to kind of show the heart behind this one more time.
But for now, I’m looking forward to going back to a normal quiet life, but now with a little more wisdom of how the world really works. I don’t have nearly as much control over what happens next as my heart leads me to believe. I am a tree in a story about a forest, and that’s all God made me to be.