I actually copied this post from my other blog – it’s not really a devotional motivation, but I did want to share it here to recommend it to any of you who might live in the area and have a chance to see it. As you know, The Screwtape Letters does make you think about our lives as Christians in a unique way. So again, if you have a chance to see it, do so.
Good times …
Yesterday a friend and I drove down to Chicago to see The Screwtape Letters at Mercury Theater (near Wrigleyville or maybe actually IN Wrigleyville, not sure of all the boundaries, but we were near enough to Wrigley to see Cub signs).
We left early because we weren’t sure about parking and thought we’d eat before the show. So we found a space and then walked around the neighborhood looking for a restaurant.
I noticed one of those wood-framed, glass-covered announcement boards that had a lot of advertisements on it – and a menu. So I stopped to read the menu, but couldn’t actually find the restaurant itself. A twenty-something came up behind us and as we moved out of the way to let him past, I saw a blackboard sign with Cafe Avanti written on it in chalk. The sign was in front of one of those brick row houses you see in Chicago – you walk into the living room, then the dining room, and then the kitchen is in back of the house – with a bedroom on the side.
I asked the twenty-something if it was a good place to eat and he told me they had the greatest sandwiches around. So we followed him up the steps and inside and indeed, it was like being in someone’s house.
Though we were there at an odd time (about two), the tables were packed. The whole place had a kitschy, retro vibe. Several people sat in the living room area and others in the bedroom-area-turned-wifi/chatting area. The lady behind the counter was super friendly, suggesting what we should order and then patiently giving us time to look at the menu. She said their speciality was the roast turkey sandwich, so that’s what I got. Being a lover of fruit smoothies, I also ordered raspberry/strawberry/yogurt smoothie which was excellent.
We sat at a table in the living-room area. Behind us were two college girls studying on their laptops. The one girl (whose laptop I could see) was looking at a map of the Dead Sea and looking up verses on Bible Gateway. At the table next to them was a family: a dad, mom and two kids – maybe 5th grade/middle school. They were deeply involved in a game of Monopoly, picked up from the cafe’s stack of games. (When we left, the two girls sitting down at our table had a Scrabble game in hand.)
Since we were right across the street from the theater, we stayed at the cafe until 3:30 – never did we feel like they wanted us to leave. The studying continued on the country of Israel and the Monopoly game seemed to be getting down right competitive.
We hurried across the street. (That Chicago wind can be biting cold.) And into the theater.
The production itself was superb. For ninety minutes, Screwtape dictated letters to the unseen Wormwood. Toadpipe bounced around – a character with a small amount of words and a large amount of facial expressions. We heard about a Christian’s church-hopping, temptations, friendships and pride.
They have extended the run of the play until
February 15th – so if you have the chance to see it, do so.