Speaker: Pastor Mike Dawson
February 07, 2017
This week we continued in our four-week series called God on Broadway, where we are discovering important teachings about our faith through the storylines of Broadway musicals. Each week of this series has a different musical theme, and this week’s theme was Wicked. The musical Wicked is a prequel to the Wizard of Oz, and it is all about the story of the Wicked Witch of the West, named Elphaba. In The Wizard of Oz, the Wicked Witch of the West is portrayed as a villain who tries to harm Dorothy and her friends the scarecrow, lion, and tin man. She steals Dorothy’s ruby red slippers, which prevent Dorothy from going back home to Kansas. However, in the musical Wicked, we learn about Elphaba’s story. She was born green, and because she looked different than everyone, she was mercilessly bullied in school. Her father was emotionally abused her, and people spread lies and rumors about her throughout her life. We discover in the musical that Elphaba was an outcast, labeled “the other,” in society.
In the scripture reading, we learned about another woman who was an outcast in society, a woman named Rahab. Rahab found herself on the edges of society for several reasons: she was poor, a prostitute, and a woman. Furthermore, in the eyes of the Israelites, she was a Gentile and a foreigner. Yet, God uses Rahab to extend hospitality to the Israelite spies and help them conquer Jericho. She boldly asks the spies to protect her and her family, since she was faithful and loyal to the spies.
Rahab and Elphaba have a lot of similarities in how they were among the outcasts in society. They were both likely misunderstood and underwent ridicule and oppression. Yet, both of these women show themselves to be women of great strength and courage. Rahab finds her voice to protect her family and herself at all costs. In Wicked, the wizard is taking away animals voices and trying to control them. Elphaba tries to protect and save the animals. She refuses to help the wizard in his evil schemes because she knows it is wrong.
Both Rahab and Elphaba are unlikely heroes that show us that God can use unexpected people to accomplish God’s desires in the world. God can use people who society has written off, people who are green, and people of less honorable professions to make a difference in the world for the kingdom of God. These strong women show us that God can use us, even when we feel incapable or unqualified to do what God is calling us to do. God calls us to rise up with courage and boldness to be a force for good, a hope to the broken, a voice for the voiceless- just like Rahab and Elphaba.
Monday- Joshua 1:1-9
Tuesday- Joshua 1:10-18
Wednesday- Joshua 2:1-14
Thursday- Joshua 2:15-24
Friday- Joshua 6:22-27
Questions to Consider and Discuss:
- Why do you think God often choses to use people who society would not expect to accomplish God’s desires in the world?
- What are some things that hold you back from doing what God has called you to do?
- What is your big take-away from Rahab and/or Elphaba’s stories?
In our 11:11 Contemporary Worship Service, Pastor Katie Lewis and our Worship Leader Kristie Lee Achuff performed their own rendition of the song “For Good” from Wicked.