Godspell_2007_176 I’ve found myself in tears at least 3 times today and it is only 2:00 in the afternoon.  Once I cried when I read an email from one of my fellow cast members this morning.  I found myself crying again when I was listening to praise music while working out mid-day.  Then I cried numerous times reading Anne Lamott’s new book.  I’m not sure whether it’s hormones or the intensity of the emotions surrounding this weekend of Godspell, but my spirit feels raw…like the new skin underneath when the scab has come off…it doesn’t hurt, but it needs time to toughen up to live out in the real world.  None of the tears were about sadness.  Each time…if there is a common thread…the tears were about people being saved by grace.  Saved from alienation, saved from self-obsession, saved from loneliness, addiction and despair.  Grace that softens the edges of our spirits and allows us to open up to other human beings and to God.  Grace that says you are OK just like you are.  Grace that says that you are loved deeply and forever and for no reason except that you are you….with no requirement except that you accept that Grace.  Saving Grace….life-affirming Grace.  Today it overwhelmed me and made me cry.

There is a song in the show…the first song that Jesus sings and that we join him in singing.  It is a plea for God to save us….God Save the People.  A prayer we pray when we see the images from Iraq or Darfur or Southeast D.C….a prayer I pray every time I hear George Bush speak (OK, sorry, I’ve been reading Anne Lamott all afternoon and I’m feeling fiesty 🙂  It really helped me when our director reminded us that, although we are celebrating and dancing during this upbeat song, we are also pleading, begging, searching for answers…for saving…for grace perhaps.  The disciples we play were, as we are, people in need of saving.  Here are the words…read them as a prayer:

When wilt thou save the people?
Oh God of mercy, when?
Not kings and lords, but nations,
Not thrones and crowns, but men!
Flow’rs of thy heart, o God, are they;
Let them not pass, like weeds, away,
Their heritage a sunless day.
God save the people.

Shall crime bring crime forever,
Strength aiding still the strong?
Is it thy will, o Father,
That men shall toil for wrong?
“No”, say thy mountains;
“No”, say thy skies;
Man’s clouded sun shall brightly rise,
And songs be heard instead of sighs.
God save the people.

When wilt thou save the people?
Oh God of mercy when?
The people, Lord, the people,
Not thrones and crowns, but men!
God save the people, for thine they are,
Thy children as thy angels fair.
God save the people from despair.
God save the people.
Oh God save the people!
God save the people!
Oh God save the people!
God save the people.
Oh God save the people!
God save the people!
Oh God save the people!

When wilt thou save the people?
O God of mercy when?
The people, Lord, the people,
Not thrones and crowns, but men!
God save the people, save us,
For thine they are, for thine they are.
Thy children as thy angels fair:
O, God save the people,
Save the people,
God save the people,
From despair.
God save the people!

God save the people,
O, God save the people,
God save the people,
O, God save the people,
God save the people,
God save the people,
God save the people.

(By the way, my younger daughter took over 200 pictures of our rehearsal last night.  I will post a bunch of Godspell pictures tomorrow or later today!  The one above is from last night…us reaching out to touch Jesus.)