Them trees. Some nights, it’s so quiet you can hear the sound of a leaf fall. And you can tell the color of that leaf by the tiny crisp crack it makes as it lights on the ground.Bright Star, Daddy Murphy
Bright Star closed Saturday night. This musical with ACU Theatre has been one of my favorite shows to work on. If you have read my last few blogs you have probably heard some about it, and this blog will reference that show as I wrap up my final thoughts on the story. My favorite line in the show is shown above and it has changed for me as this process has gone on.
Because I played a deaf character I thought this line was a bit ironic, that I could hear leaves fall as a deaf man. Which is pretty comedic to say the least, but as I spent more time on it and cascaded about the implications of the line I resonated pretty deeply with it.
I hate being still. Not like, “my leg has to always be moving,” but life has to keep moving for me. What is next? Where am I headed? What is on the agenda? I rarely take the time to be content and peaceful with where God has me.
Until this semester.
When I was cast as Daddy Murphy, I have to be honest I was disappointed. (Professors if you’re reading this please keep reading). It had been a couple years since I had played an older character and after getting the opportunity to play Michael Santino in Wade Byington’s film The Brotherhood, I was wanting to continue playing those characters in which I had a fairly deep understanding of who they are.
Although I was disappointed I was still excited. There is a scene in the show between Daddy Murphy and his daughter, Alice, which has become my favorite scene I’ve performed in to this day. In this scene we reconcile the decisions that my character had made that had a huge effect on Alice and I ask for forgiveness, by saying that “I’m not asking for forgiveness.”
During my study of this show and the characters, I was in the midst of my obsession with the movie Beautiful Boy, (which let’s be honest is still going on, in fact read my blog post on it here), and I was getting so much research on fatherhood and the affirmation we as humans constantly seek from our fathers, regardless of circumstances. Through this research I spent time reflecting things I learned last summer at intern training for Josiah Venture under the teaching of Dave Patty.
In fact, I taught a sermon on Dave Patty’s book Father God at Beltway North Student Ministry a couple weeks ago. You can watch it here:
A little rough on the edges I know..but it was/is my first sermon that I have done and I loved looking into the Heart of God the Father. If you did not watch the sermon, that is fine, it is pretty long.. it deals with how we perceive God as our Father.
In surrounding myself with all of this I had a stronger base for who Daddy Murphy is to me. And it made me fall in love with the character. The experience of being a that I have had as a son in my family and in my relationship with God allowed me to fully engage Daddy Murphy and his given circumstances.
So I have come to realize that this favorite line of mine, “the sound of a leaf fall..,” has come to mean that in my stillness, the beauty that surrounds me has the potential to overwhelm me. That when I sit in silence and take in what God has for me I am stunned by creation.
Over the last year I have been asked the question..”So what are you going to do when you graduate? Theatre or Ministry?”
You know, whenever someone asked me this question my anxiety just spiked and I would say “I actually have no idea.” Or I would make something up to how I was feeling that day. As of the last few weeks though, I have come to be content with saying “yes” to whatever is next and not worrying about what comes after graduation. Because lets face it…God will place me where I need to be. I just need to be willing to say “yes” and hang on for the ride. And whenever there is stillness, to take the opportunity and be overwhelmed by His creation. Because all I want to do, is do the will of Him who called me.
I am so thankful for the opportunity to live in the steps of Daddy Murphy and I was honored to tell this story with talented and beautiful people. Daddy Murphy has become one of my favorite roles because I have learned what it means to do vulnerable work night after night, which if you read my last blog post on my deafness, can be quite exhausting to do. But it is 100% worth it.
I love telling stories, and this was a story that has made me better.
and onward I go, to take this journey.
Prayers: My funding is coming in but I am needing one last push, praise God for His provision. I speak at a speaking center contest on Thursday about making ASL a language on campus, prayers for speaking honestly and with my best foot forward. Prayers for the final two weeks of school.