Play has lesson for us all

I didn’t want to go. I told them I didn’t want to go.

Missie Tschida and Myrna were going to see “He Was Raised” Friday night as the Greater Escambia Council for the Art presented their Passion Play.

On a Sunday afternoon a couple of weeks ago, I went to a rehearsal to get pictures for publicity. I had heard them yell, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” And that was enough for me.

I didn’t want to go.

Missie and Myrna said I should go.

Our friend Tom Tschida who works with us was in the play. He said, “You have to go. You don’t want to miss this.”

Friday afternoon, I took tickets and money over to the theater, and Phil Johnson, Sharon Poulsen and Tom McGinty were there. I told them I didn’t want to go.

They told me I would regret not going. That I had to go. I told them it’s too hard to watch those events, even though we know the outcome.

Phil worked with us at Atmore News for a while and we got to know each other pretty well. He knows how easily I cry, and I mentioned that to him that afternoon. And he knew, but he said I should go.

Still, I didn’t want to go.

But I did.

Phil sent me a text late that night and asked me if it was worth it. Yes, it was. I discreetly soaked two tissues, but yes it was worth it.

The acting was excellent, as was the script Phil wrote. I’ve read a lot of Phil’s work and I have to say this was the best piece he’s ever written.

I’ve thought of the play many, many times since Friday night – the events of Holy Week as Jesus and the disciples made their way to Jerusalem, to Golgotha, to the cross. The money-changers in the Temple. The woman at the well. Lazarus coming from the grave.

I’ve replayed scenes in my head – scenes we’ve read numerous times in the Bible, but suddenly see coming to life right in front of us.

Scenes like the woman caught in adultery. Trying to catch Jesus in a trap, the Pharisees brought her before Him to declare that, according to law, she must be stoned. But Jesus was silent for a time, writing something on the ground. We don’t know what it was. Some think it was the Ten Commandments.

When He spoke, He told them that whoever was without sin should cast the first stone. The large stones made a dramatic sound when they hit the stage as one by one, the actors dropped their stones, hung their heads and walked away.

Today (Monday, April 10), I’ve thought most about this scene with the adulterous woman. Today, our governor resigned amid reports of infidelity and misuse of state funds. Do I think he should have resigned? Absolutely, and I wish he had not waited so long.

A reporter on an area TV station said late this afternoon their social media sites were blowing up with negative comments about the governor. But, there’s nothing to be accomplished by that.

The fall from grace seems harder when it’s a public figure, especially someone we elected and trusted to be a true leader. We think they should be above this type of behavior. But they’re just people too.

We’re all holding a stone, but I sure can’t throw the first one. How about you?