The stage is a dangerous place for humans. Everyone I know that stands on a stage, without exception has and most of the time is, enduring some serious tension.
I am not talking about a muscle cramp or some superficial body aches. I am talking about gut wrenching, painful tension.
The definition of tension is “the act or action of stretching or the condition or degree of being stretched to stiffness.”
Being stretched to stiffness...yeah, that doesn’t sound good at all!
When I began speaking at a young age, I thought that the stage would be a place of safety. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
The most potentially dangerous place for both the believer and the non-believer is under the spotlight.
I once heard a close friend say that, "The stage is addictive." So we have two elements at play here: addiction to the stage and tension surrounding the stage.
The definition of addiction is “the continued use of a mood altering substance or behavior despite adverse dependency consequences.”
Tension + Addiction = being stretched to stiffness and feeling trapped.
Not exactly the kind of math problem that adds up to success.
If someone would have just tapped me on the shoulder right before the first time I stepped on stage and said, “Look bro, this is going to hurt and eventually you may find yourself addicted,” I may have ran like those crazy guys that get chased by bulls!
A trophy allows you to experience a fleeting past emotion. A certificate usually finds its way behind a filing cabinet. A text eventually gets erased, no matter whom it’s from.
The stage “promises” a momentary satisfaction and somehow excuses you from thinking about its many traps.
How do we handle this predicament? I believe the beginning of Psalm 1 holds a lot of weight for stage goers and we can use it to check our lives and hearts.
“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked nor stands in the way of sinners nor sits in the seat of scoffers, but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.” (Psalm 1:1-2)
1. Don’t surround yourself with wickedness or people chasing sin.
This may blur your perception of the purpose of the platform you are called to steward. This doesn’t mean we should run away from sinners unless, of course, you plan on outrunning yourself! We should just keep a close eye on who we keep close.
2. Delighting in Gods law by meditating on it day and night.
This also means choosing to follow Christ when our emotions or tendencies are pulling us down a different road.
The stage can become an addictive place of tension if it is separated from God’s grace and guidance. However, tension is something God has always used to refine the believer and non-believer.
Whatever your “stage” may be and however massive your influence becomes, don’t ever believe that it’s better, bigger or sweeter then Jesus.
What is your stage or place of influence?
What areas of your influence could become addictive?
Are you willing to live in the tension?