We went to see a play last week, trying to figure out some of the cultural scene here in Austin. Tiny, tiny theater--in the round, four rows deep--so it was very intimate. Because the theme of the play was one man's struggle to recover his faith in the midst of deep suffering, the intimate setting was very uncomfortable, being so close to a stranger's pain, but I think that was partly the point.
The play is called An Almost Holy Picture and it was essentially a one-man show--the story of an Episcopalian priest who leaves the ministry after a tragic accident and then recovers his faith slowly after the birth of his daughter, who is mysteriously covered with luminous white fur. Honestly, it was a little odd and yet touching. By the end, he finds his faith again in a paradox--the commitment to live the life he has created for himself (his "real life" as he puts it over and over) fully and without shame and, at the same time, the willingness to relinquish the person who is at the center of his life and his happiness.
He says at one point that our longing is an arrow that points us to God. At another, he reflects that we love life so much that it is almost a sin (which startled me, as I realized that my tradition has literally taught that loving our lives is a sin).
So, we're beginning to get out and do some things (I'll report on the Bat-fest this weekend) and enjoy our new home.