This puppet show was not supposed to happen.
After traveling over 1200 miles to work for a small church in Mexico, including preparing a 30-minute puppet performance for their children, I was bedridden with the flu and a 102-degree temperature all week.
Fortunately I was part of a team that worked without me but I was in charge of the puppet show.
By Sunday morning, when the performance was planned, I felt well enough to help prepare the props and set up our stage.
And then two of our teenage puppeteers approached us, faces like a birthday child with no gifts. “We just found out that Mary bought drug paraphernalia this week and tried to hide it in Teresa’s suit case.”
What do you say to that?
Mary had joined our team at the last minute and no one knew her very well. We just hadn’t realized how un-well we knew her. I envisioned a church team getting busted at the border for paraphernalia possession – and sweet Teresa getting the blame.
Nothing like a little distraction when you’re trying to put a performance together.
We drew in a team breath – no easy task when half the team was still hyperventilating over Mary’s deception – and continued on. The props were ready, puppets laid about, puppeteers ready – and the electricity went out. We needed electricity for our music.
Power outages, we learned, were not uncommon in this neighborhood. Why hadn’t we packed batteries for the CD player? For the same reason we had let Mary join the team. Not thinking well.
We dispatched someone to buy batteries. He returned with four D batteries purchased for $20, which was highway robbery, and we punched them into our player. We then found out what highway robbery really is: buying batteries that were dead for $20.
So my innovative husband threw himself into building an adapter that would run the CD player off a car battery. Visualize that. The car battery was bigger than the CD player.
He stripped wires and taped ends together. Five minutes before the performance time, he gave me a thumbs up.
And then the electricity came on.
We completed the show and then the lights went out again.
But the audience applauded our show and several came forward with questions and commitments for the pastor.
In spite of the flu, Mary the paraphernalia smuggler, and power issues, the puppet show that couldn’t happen did happen. And with a resounding “yes!”