Theology of inclusion. Process versus Product. In many areas, you can have quality in one area, such as Process, but it comes at the expense of the other—especially in theatre. Where this debate often plays out is in casting. If you are of an exclusive mind, then you can easily turn down people who don’t meet your minimum standards of qualification. Easy peasy: you pick Product. But, if you are of an inclusive mind, you will quickly find yourself in the tough situation of having a person who really wants to participate, but simply isn’t qualified. Often, when in this situation, you could easily find someone who could do a better job—but this person is so eager, and they want it so badly. So the question becomes, do I sacrifice a degree of quality so I can include this person?
The wonky thing that Paul points at right at the top of Chapter 4 in Ephesians, is that by God’s way of doing things, you don’t have to choose between them. In fact, choosing between them is the worst option, because how you do things is no less important than what you are trying to accomplish. Paul makes this clear when he writes “live a life worthy of the calling you have received.” Where theatre is a world built by illusion and deception, where we accept that much must be hidden—and whatever is hidden can be as ugly as possible—Ephesians reminds us that when it comes to God’s point of view, it all matters.
When it comes to the theatre I help run, we’ve made it a priority to try to balance our focus between process and product, and we can actually see positive results from it. Where have you come up against this? Has is surprised you?