Dealing With Disappointment

Five years ago, I directed my favorite musical, “The Wizard of Oz,” at my school. I was so excited about directing this play! But the part I always hate about directing is the casting. I hate posting that list, hate knowing some of the kids will be upset at not getting the roles they wanted.

The year of “The Wizard of Oz,” I had several girls who could have played an amazing Dorothy. The decision came down to two seniors: Angie and Janell. Both were great singers, great actresses, beautiful young women. Either would have been a fabulous choice. But I could only choose one.  After much thought and prayer and consulting with others, I decided to give the part to Janell. Angie was given the part of Glinda.

When I posted that list, I stood back and watched the kids come up to see what parts they got. My stomach was in knots when Angie and Janell walked up. I knew how much Angie wanted to play Dorothy. I was afraid she’d cry or get mad or storm off. But she didn’t do any of those things. Here’s what Angie did…

Angie looked at that cast list and then looked at Janell. Then Angie opened up her arms and pulled Janell into them and said, “Janell, you are my best friend in the whole world and you are going to be an amazing Dorothy. I am so proud of you!”

WoOAngie was more gracious than many adults I know. Sure she was disappointed, sure she was tempted to storm off or get mad. But Angie loves Jesus, and she makes knowing him and loving him a priority. So when she was faced with a disappointment, it was that love that came out. Angie knew that her inner character is far more important than anything else. She knew that loving others is far more freeing than loving yourself.

Angie taught me something that day that I hope I will never forget. She taught me how to deal with disappointment in a way that not only honors God, but also honors those around me. She demontrated selflessness and love to me and to everyone around her.

“By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:35

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