The Importance of Community

My oldest daughter, an actress, works with various Seattle theater companies. This summer she’s playing Silvia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, with Shakespeare in the Park. The program provides free theater in twelve parks, bringing the arts to the people.

My husband and I drove to one of the parks last weekend to see the play. It turned out to be a beautiful day and almost two hundred people arrived with blankets, folding chairs, and picnic baskets to enjoy the show.

The performance was scheduled to start at 3:00, but at 3:15 one of the actors announced a lead actor was missing. They were attempting to reach him and would let the crowd know soon as to the situation. At 3:30, they still had not heard from him.

The cast offered two options to the audience. They would either cancel the show, or perform what scenes that they could without the missing actor in order to give a taste of their presentation.

The crowd cheered at the second option and the cast put together a condensed version of the play. They did such a fabulous job entertaining the audience for over an hour, we’re going to venture to another park this weekend to see the show in its entirety. And yes – they did finally locate the missing actor and were able to announce that he was okay.

The cast pulled off a good performance, despite important missing pieces, because they rallied as a community.

Members of our church recently worked together to create a float for a parade, part of a big city celebration. The float, on a long flat bed of a truck, wasn’t constructed until the morning of the parade. But, with everyone contributing various pieces and working together, by the time the parade started, we were ready with a beautiful presentation. Live music from the worship band, church members on the float waving and greeting the parade viewers, as well as teens from the youth group handing out candy and talking to children, made our entry enjoyable for people along the parade route.

The float was successful because we, as a church community, worked together.

We need community.
We need to belong to something bigger than ourselves.

Community is important in God’s eyes, too.

For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them. Matthew 18:20 (NIV)


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