Hebrews 12:1-2

"..let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith..." - Hebrews 12:1-2

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

July 18 was a big day for me. Not only was this the day that I received a job offer, but this was also the day that I accepted the role of "Jesus Christ" in the "Isle of Dreams". I have been playing "John the Baptist" for almost a year and a half and was in the role of "Noah" prior to that. In all, I will have been a part of this ministry for four years this November. Throughout my journey with the cast, I have seen God move in some amazing ways. I have seen how He has used them to mold me into a more solid Christian and have seen how God has used Michael O'Hara to "stretch" me vocally. "Stretch" is such a large understatement. I have gone from a soft-spoken, wispy, timid, airy vocalist to an all-out, wide-mouthed, unashamed, sweaty, blow-hard singer.

It's been amazing to see how God has grown me through the process. I started as "Noah" - the one who proclaimed the impending judgment and pointed the way to saving the world. Then I became "John the Baptist" - the one who proclaimed the impending judgment and pointed the way to saving the world. Now I have stepped into the role of "Jesus Christ" - THE ONE who has provided the way to save the world. The progression from Old to New Testament to today is not lost on me.

These men were bold men of character and were very vocal about the message that God the father sent to them. Two of them faltered from time to time, but remained faithful to the calling of God in their lives. Jesus Christ, Son of God, never wavered in His Faith and determination to do the Will of the Father. He stayed faithful, even to the death on the cross. He lingered on this earth after His resurrection for 40 days to further strengthen, teach and fortify His disciples. Then He sent the Holy Spirit to comfort and guide those who would believe on His Name.

My responsibility as a member of the "Isle of Dreams" ministry has always been to live a life of Holiness and live in such a way to bring glory and praise to God. We are all called to live a life that is pleasing to the Lord and we must always remain humble. We recognize that God has allowed us to take part in this ministry and that participating in this move requires us to live circumspect before Him.

My responsibility as a vocalist is to practice and strengthen my voice, so I may use it to bring praise, honor and glory to God at every opportunity. My responsibility as an actor is to study the character I am portraying and attempt to bring to life the many different aspects of that person in a way that is a real as possible, without ever compromising or conflicting their story as recorded in the Bible.

My responsibility to God upon taking the role of His Son, Jesus Christ, is to remain humble and realize that God is worthy of all praise and that I am worthy of nothing. I have done nothing in and of myself to ever warrant even playing the role of Christ - it is all the result of God's blessing and Grace toward me. He has allowed me to remain humble and He has provided the motivation to remain faithful in this ministry. He has allowed me to grow vocally to the point where I can attempt to sing the songs necessary for the role. He granted me favor in allowing to remain in my previous roles for the time that He had determined and He has blessed me with being able to simply be in the cast of the "Isle of Dreams".

It is with great humility and reverence that I take on portraying the role of "Jesus Christ". May God continue to bless the "Isle of Dreams" ministry, as we continue to spread His message of Salvation, Redemption and Love to everyone we come into contact with. May He be pleased with what He sees and hears.

To God be the glory great things He has done!

Monday, July 18, 2005

It's been quite a while since I posted. Obviously, a lot has been going on. Here's a quick recap:
July 8-11 - Lisa and I joined her family on a road trip to Angola, Indiana. We spent the weekend at Oak Hills Campground for a family reunion (Brail side){pictures}. The setup was great for such an event. Each family had a cabin and we all had lunch and dinner around the fire. There was a beach nearby on the lake, a large pool, go-karts and a nearby Outlet Mall, all of which provided entertainment throughout the weekend. It was a good time of family being together and enjoying each other's company. Sunday morning Lisa and I led the singing, Katrina read the scripture, Bob gave the devotional and Deb prayed the closing prayer. It's always nice to be able to have "church" outside surrounded by nature. We'll be going back to the same place next year.

July 16 - Lisa and I went to the Cardinals game versus Houston. It was a bit warm out, but we had seats in the shade, so it was okay. It was a good game, with one particularly memorable moment. (No, it wasn't the Larry Walker homerun that ended up winning the game for the Cardinals, although that was cool.) It was around the seventh inning when Lisa said "You know, I think I am starting to like baseball." Naturally, I stared bug-eyed at her for a moment and then laughed. Since we've been dating, Lisa has gone to almost all of my weekly softball games during the summer and we've been to several of my sisters games as well. Last year I watched every Cardinal's playoff game on television and Lisa joined me for most of them (although she liked to nap between the 3rd and 8th innings sometimes). Somewhere along the way, Lisa has learned the position names and numbers (for scoring purposes), some of the lingo (three up, three down; hit in the gap; up the middle) and has even grasped an understanding of some of the intricacies of fielding and situational decision-making. It's fun to see someone who had a limited knowledge of a spot come to a place of liking it.

July 12-19 - Our Air conditioning stopped functioning properly. The fan would run, but it would never blow cool air. It just recirculated the warm air. Thankfully, most of these days the temperatures were in the high 80s, low 90s and 70s at night. After a couple of days we moved the futon mattress to the basement, where we slept for 3 nights. We made the best of the situation by watching some movies downstairs and basically camping out in the relative cool. The repair guy came on Tuesday afternoon and discovered that the compressor had somehow come unattached to its power line. He hooked it back up and the AC works like a champ. I'm thankful for having air conditioning again, but I am even more thankful for having a basement to retreat to if we have to.

July 18 - Lisa and I came home from work to discover a FedEx envelope on our doorstep. I opened it to find a job offer from a company that I had interviewed with over a month ago. They had told me at that time it would be two weeks until I would hear from them regarding the position. Naturally, after I hadn't heard back from them within that time frame, I simply wrote it off as being filled by someone else. Imagine my surprise when I received the offer a month later. Essentially, I hadn't heard from them since the day I interviewed with them. Surprise! I read through the offer, talked to Lisa about it and prayed over it for a couple of days. Yesterday I called the recruiter to decline the position. It's nice to be called in for an interview and it was great to get an offer from them - it makes me feel good. But, in the end, I realized that the position would hinder my ability to minister with the "Isle of Dreams" and would also possibly demand me to work weekends and nights and overtime. All of these things led to the decision to stay where I am and be thankful for the job that I have that not only helps pay the bills but also allows me great flexibility.