2017 saw the last year for Crossroad Church’s Christmas Event, “Awaited”. Tens of thousands of people came to see this show every year and that number was only increasing as each year passed. However, because of their focus on becoming a national church (among other reasons), Awaited has been discontinued. What will replace it has yet to be announced, but I was sad to see it go. It was a tradition for my husband and I to volunteer every year (mostly holding doors).

Awaited also holds a significant memory in my life. 2008 was the first time I was able to see Awaited. Opening night. I was there with two of my friends. During the performance of “Reach (for the Star)”, the wise men scene, one of the performers, Keri, fell to her death during an aerial rope stunt. The harness came loose as she was 25ft in the air, causing her to land on a concrete floor in the aisle.

We thought it was a part of the show at first. It looked like a bunch of colorful fabric falling.

My heart broke. I saw my pastor react to it with confusion and anger. He would later address the church with a honest conversation about it. Her death and the aftermath shook a lot of people. And it stuck with me.

Awaited became more than just a reminder of the gift God gave us in the form of His son. It also reminds me that this life is a gift, and we’re not guaranteed tomorrow. A point that would be reinforced by my brother passing away a few years later, just about a week apart from Keri’s anniversary.

Say the things you need to say, do the things that you’re called to do. Put kindness and love into the world. Treat other people with respect and equality. No matter what. Lower yourself. And be brave.