Sand artist illustrates Passion Week for Easthaven crowd

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, April 7, 2009

World renowned sand artist Joe Castillo and his wife Cindy wereheaded for Brookhaven from Richmond, Ky., to do a presentation atEasthaven Baptist Church Monday when the airline lost theirluggage, complete with most of the equipment Castillo needed forthe show.

But luckily, the parts of the show that can’t be replaced – theblack volcanic sand from Hawaii, the overhead camera, the music andcolored light show on his iPod – were safely with Castillo in acarry-on.

“I figured if I can bring the technical stuff, the sand and thecamera with me, I can get glass anywhere,” he said.

And when the show started at Easthaven at 6:30 p.m., Castillowas ready to go with a light table that had been “MacGyver-ed”together in about an hour and 20 minutes by church members.

Castillo used the story of the lost luggage to illustrate partof his point as he spoke before his presentation. He told thecongregation that every person has their own life story, and thatGod is the only one who can control the path a life takes.

“Every life has a story, and here’s the problem,” he said. “Alot of times they don’t seem to make sense, and all of a suddenyour heart’s broken, and you’re thinking, ‘This is not part of mystory. Why does my story take this turn?'”

Even Jesus’ life had turns He wished it didn’t take, Castillosaid, pointing out the night in the Garden of Gethsemane when Jesustold the Lord, “If you are willing, let this cup pass from me, butnot my will but Thine be done.”

And each person’s individual tale is just a part of a biggerpicture, Castillo said.

“Whatever story is being told in your life, if you place thatwithin God’s story, which starts at time’s beginning and goes onforever, all of a sudden the things you can’t figure out that justbegin to make sense,” he said. “He may not give you all the answersand that certainly doesn’t mean you won’t have problems, but youmight start to see where you fit.”

The rest of Castillo’s “Passion of Christ” presentation wasprojected on the multimedia screens, as he drew scenes from thelife of Jesus in the sand and it was backlit with colored lightsthat changed with the music, which among other things, lit thescene of Golgotha in a blood red color.

And with Easter approaching, Pastor Eric Brown pointed out thatit’s hard to tell the story of what went on in the life of Christduring the week between Palm Sunday and Easter, but Castillo haddone it in a way that didn’t even require words.

“The hardest thing we struggle with as Christians isunderstanding what took place this week,” he said. “But these handshave told you the story of the greatest thing that ever took placeon this earth. That’s God using him as an instrument to tell youthat He came here to set you free from the things you can’tcontrol.”

Castillo was the final guest speaker in Easthaven’s five-week”People Get Ready” series that brought national speakers to thechurch every Monday leading up to Easter.