Today, I can officially announce that Above All is coming to First Church of Pearland in Pearland, Texas. You can see their announcement here. First Church's pastor is Ken Gurley and it is the home of Above All producer Johnathan Dean. We are excited to bring the Above All experience to this church. If you live in the Pearland or Greater Houston area, please come and join us as we portray the last days of Jesus Christ. Service will start at 10AM. More details to come here, but you can also go over to First Church's Facebook or website to get more info as it is made available.
I recap week two of Above All practices. If you can't tell it in my voice, it was a very exhausting week and one that tried our nerves and patience at times. Conflict arose, but the cast and crew came through it mostly unscathed and with a greater purpose to perform this amazing depiction of the last days of Christ. Listen in the podcast below as I discuss the ups, downs and all in-betweens of our long rewarding week.
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Today was a full day of practices. Some cast members were up there for more than 6 hours straight. Others had to be up there in the morning for two hours and then come back in the afternoon for another two hour stretch. The directors and other leaders were there for most of the day. It's days like this that can really try your patience and drain your energy. Still each group worked through to accomplish the goal: to get better at getting it right. Today I'll recap two scenes. One is new and the other is a familiar one with a new twist.
Just a quick post here because I wanted this to be read by as many people as possible. Last night during practice, we were going back over the Last Supper Scene. Each one of us brought our very best to the table and could really feel the loss the Apostles had to be feeling when Christ said he would suffer, be betrayed by one of them and that he was going to leave us for a season. The whole experience with my Brothers was awesome, emotional and spiritually uplifting.
However, what I write about today doesn't relate to the scene. It is something that happened between runthroughs of that scene. The leader of our group, Spenser Waters, has been in a lot of pain lately. He has been experiencing major back problems. As we stood outside of the room where we were practicing waiting for another runthrough, Spenser sat down on the ground in pain. We noticed it just as we had at other times, but this time something was different. A number of us surrounded him, laid hands on him and began to pray. We put the promises of Mark 16:18 into practice. We prayed and believed. We got ready to go back in to practice, but one of us noticed that Spenser wasn't with us anymore. He had run downstairs and gone into the church where Pastor was speaking. He went up to Pastor and told him what happened. He had been healed. God healed him. Our faith and practice of the scripture worked. Because we believed and we were in a place spiritually to let God move, one of our brothers is pain free today!
This is not the only thing that has happened this year during Above All Practice and it certainly won't be the last. God is moving and He wants to move on and in all of us. We don't have to be cast members of an Easter Production, or pastor or anything "special". We just need to believe in God and believe in His Word. I look forward to sharing more testimonies like this as the Above All Season progresses.
On Monday, we practiced one of the most tasking scenes in Above All for the Apostles. It is not as physically imposing as the procession or crucifixion scenes, but the combination of conveying emotions, practical timing, and physical requirements makes this scene a difficult one for our group. Today, I breakdown why these factors are true and how we handled the task.
Each week, I will be recapping my experience with Above All, how the practices progress and the interesting people I interact with along the way. Today, I dive into the Last Supper, Mary of Bethany, The Garden Betrayal Scene and To Whom Shall We Go. I'll also give some insight into how the cast as a whole interacts once we finally get to performances. Enjoy and head on over to TWTL's YouTube Channel to Subscribe and listen to/watch more great content. Also, swing by our Facebook Page and Like our Page so you can get regular updates when we post an Above All update. God Bless.
Today (Febrauary 17), the Apostles were at practice from 12:30pm until 5pm. That is nothing compared to Jesus (played by Troy Toney) who was there from 12:30 until almost 9pm. Still, that's what happens when you sign up for a production like this. You commit to sacrificing Saturdays and entire evenings, even early on in the process. Many of the cast have family they leave at home to come and prepare for this drama. We lose moments in this life so that we might produce something that will make a difference for somebody in the next life. These sacrifices and the knowledge of what they produce are what make this production worthwhile. Today, the Apostles practiced two scenes in depth. These two scenes are completely different from each other, which made for a challenging day. Here's what I can relate from my experience.
The first Above All practice for Apostles is in the books. We went through the Last Supper Scene and it was awesome. Today, I recap the experience of performing the Last Supper and all of what goes into preparing for this powerful scene.
Chris Farris is the author of The Way, a manual detailing how to implement the Beatitudes into your life. He review events and other media and offers other insights into writing and working for the Kingdom of God.