Preparations for the WHY? drama are well under way. This seemed like a great time for Penny Oesterling to interview Linda Little, who directs WHY?, to get a better idea of who Linda is, how she is serving, and what this ministry means to her and us. Many thanks to Linda for her service and for taking time out of hectic schedule to share with us.
Q&A Interview with Linda Little
1.) Linda, could you tell those of us who might not know you a little about yourself, such as your background, family, interests, passions, how long you’ve been a believer, and how long you’ve been part of Forestville?
I grew up in FBC, as did my Mother and 5 siblings. I was saved and baptized when I was 10 years old, shortly after my father passed away. His passing made all of us draw closer to the Lord and lean on Him for strength and comfort. I have been married to John Little for 39 years. John runs our lighting here at FBC and has served as a Deacon and a teacher for many years. Our oldest son, Bradley is an Architect in Anchorage Alaska. Adam is our middle child and is a Fireman in Travelers Rest. He and his wife Kristen have two boys, Wyatt 3 and Everett who will be 2 in June. Our youngest is Sara Reinholz. She and her husband, John are expecting our first granddaughter, Payton in February.
2.) I understand you direct the WHY? musical drama. Tell us about how WHY? started and your involvement in it.
I’ve written short stories and skits since I was a kid. I always wanted to be involved in something more than my short skits, but was way too shy to volunteer. Our Music Minister introduced us to “The Victor” one evening at choir practice and asked if anyone wanted to help with drama. I raised my hand thinking others behind me had as well. Turned out, I was the only one. He threw me the book and said “have at it”. Now, 26 years and several titles later, God has allowed me to write and direct “Why”. We decided on the title “Why” one day when we started asking ourselves why we do the program. Why does God love us when we do not deserve His love? Why did he die for us? We wanted to encourage others to ask questions about God as well. Even the “Why” shirts we wear cause strangers to ask “Why what”. That opens the door for us to witness.
3.) How has God used your involvement in WHY? in your own life….to minister to you or encourage your faith, etc.?
Researching scripture to get ideas for the script has caused me to dig deeper into His Word than ever before. Doing a program of this scale requires a lot of work, dedication and a great deal of prayer. I find myself praying for the actors and other participants on a personal level. I don’t just pray that they will remember their lines and be at rehearsals. I pray for their families and their circumstances. The payback for all of us is when we see lost people walk the aisles and give their hearts to Jesus.
4.) How would you say it has impacted our church body?
“WHY” takes a lot of energy, time and work. It requires the help of many people. Not everyone can act, direct or sing, but they want to be involved in some way. “WHY” provides opportunities for everyone to use his or her gifts and talents. Childcare, clean up, parking assistance, greeting, counseling, meal prep, and so on; ALL of these things are needed to produce this very anointed program.
5.) Could you discuss how WHY? has impacted the community beyond our church? Is there anything that has surprised you?
People from all over the community, county, State and beyond have attended “WHY”. Lives are changed in many ways. Some are saved, some are drawn closer to God, some are encouraged and some from other churches are inspired to start programs like “WHY” in their own churches to reach their communities.
6.) Do you have a personal story about this ministry you’d like to share with our readers?
One story I’ll never forget is a scene in the program we once did where people from different walks of life went before God on judgement day. I asked a young woman to play the role of a promiscuous woman who turned her life around and was saved. I saw tears begin to flow down her cheeks and I thought I had offended her. I apologized and she said, “No. You don’t understand. That was my life until a year ago and now I get to use my forgiven past as proof to others in that life style that there is hope for them too.” I had no idea that had been her life. God simply led me to her.
7.) If you have a prayer or maybe even a vision for this ministry, what would it be?
My prayer is always that everyone involved is participating for the right reasons. Our desire is to encourage people, change lives and lead people to Christ.