Then the Lord called, “Samuel! Samuel! and he said, “Here I am!”
1 Samuel 3:4
There is one guiding principal in improvisation: saying “yes!” For example, if your scene partner says, “Wow! Look at that beautiful kangaroo!” you can’t just say, “No, there is no kangaroo.” End of scene. Boring. Instead, you can try saying, “Yes! AND he seems to be coming right toward us!” Much more interesting; I’m curious about what will happen next, aren’t you?
It’s like that with God. We all know the stories of those who said “no” at first: there was Jonah, getting caught by the big fish, trying to run away from God; even Moses expressed some ambivalence initially about his willingness to serve the God of Israel; Mary, the mother of our Lord, who overcame her fear and confusion and said, “yes.” What a blessed yes that was, and what a saving story developed because of it. Imagine how poor our lives would be had Mary said, “No thanks, this sounds like a scary idea!” What is God offering for you to do?
This week, I’m asking us to respond with some more “yes” AND. . .
Next month you will find lots of great opportunities to participate in, to say “yes” to an activity and allow God to work through you. First, on June 3, you can sign up for an audition time for Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream,presented in an abridged version, directed by Seattle Shakespeare artist Shanna Allman (see her bio below). Whatever your age or level of experience, this presents a unique opportunity to tell this imaginative and hilarious story right here in our Great Church. Contact Shannon or go online to register your “yes”! AND invite friends to participate too.
Then, for June 9 and 10, say “yes” to our Parish Retreat. We will gather at Black Diamond Camp in Auburn on Friday night (whenever you get there after 6pm is fine) for potluck, games and campfire; Saturday we will engage in a Living Compass wellness activity, travel down the road to Red Barn Ranch to see some animals with Rachel, and then come back for lunch and Eucharist. What a great opportunity for fellowship and learning. Yes!
May God richly bless you—all of us—with more than you can ask or yet imagine. Remember what the Angel told Mary,
“For nothing will be impossible with God” Luke 1:37
Yours in possibility,
Shanna Allman’s bio:
Shanna Allman has been working as an actor for more than 21 years. She graduated with a BFA from the University of Oklahoma, and during her time there, received the Ida Z. Kirk Excellence in Acting award every year of her college career and was awarded the Van Heflin Award for most outstanding senior in the Drama Department. Most notably, however, she was honored to receive the F. Donald Clark Award for Excellence, an award chosen through the submission of faculty members and granted via the decision of the Dean and Department Heads, recognizing the single most outstanding graduating student of the Fine Arts Department.
A veteran performer of over thirty-five productions, Shanna also finds great joy in teaching and directing, especially Shakespeare. Since relocating to Seattle, Shanna has taught in multiple capacities with the Seattle Shakespeare Company (including their Camp Bill week-long acting intensives), in-school Teaching Artist workshops, and the Short Shakes Youth Drama Program (including productions of ‘Hamlet’, ‘As You Like It’, and ‘Much Ado About Nothing’). Her capacity in these productions included text and dialogue coaching, abridging scripts, and directing, as well as handling conceptualization and design of technical aspects for the productions.