Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Snap (09/04/08)
TITLE: The Missing Scene
By Karen Shell
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The crucifixion scene had left no one with a dry eye. Now, the final scene would portray the resurrection, with the most elaborate set they had ever used. John, the stage manager, had spent weeks designing a tomb with a moving rock that was as realistic as any Hollywood movie set. The scene would resemble Easter morning as closely as any this audience had ever witnessed.
The cast was ready; the music faded. A hush fell over the audience as anticipation built. As the curtain began to open, a loud snap echoed through the building. The cast looked on in horror as the tomb, the rock, and every prop of the scene lay flat on the stage. The main chord that held the entire set had snapped. Thankfully, no one was hurt, while the rubble of the set remained behind the curtain, out of view of the audience.
Rev. Grant sat in silence, almost afraid to move. Just then, he noticed John peeping around the curtain, red-faced and helpless, looking to his pastor for rescue. When John shrugged his shoulders, he knew the set was beyond repair. The play was over.
Standing slowly, Rev. Grant whispered a little prayer for guidance as he faced a bewildered crowd. “Well, folks, it looks like there will be no resurrection this year.” He noticed the stunned expressions on faces throughout the audience, then his wife‘s, who was now sitting on the front pew. Her startled look gave way to a grin and nod of understanding. That’s when he realized the impact of his words.
“What if the final scene has been played? What if there really was no resurrection? Of course, there would be no Easter, the celebration of the empty tomb. Then, God’s great plan wouldn’t have been accomplished. The prophecies wouldn’t have been fulfilled. But what would it mean to you personally?”
Rev. Grant went on with what may have been his best sermon ever, as people flooded the aisles, leaving with a greater experience than expected from a small-town church play. When the crowd thinned, John made his way to Rev. Grant, apologizing for the disaster. Rev. Grant reminded John that we all understand accidents; they’re part of life. And today, life inspired one of the best messages ever.
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