Gospel According to Glee – 40 Days at McKinley High
Day 10 – Saturday after 1st Sunday of Lent
To Read: (Series 1 Episode 13)
[New Directions arrive at a competition to find that the Cheerios Coach Sue Sylvester has given their set list to the choir they are competing against and now they have no songs to sing.]
KURT (to Cheerios): You leaked the set list, you don’t want to be here.
You were just Sue Sylvester’s little moles.
QUINN: I know for a fact that’s true. Sue asked us to spy for her.
SANTANA: Look, we may still be Cheerios, but neither of us ever gave Sue the set list.
BRITTANY: Well… I-I did, but I didn’t know what she was going to do with it.
SANTANA: Okay, look, believe what you want, but no one’s forcing me to be here. And if you ever tell anyone this I’ll deny it, but I like being in Glee Club. It’s the best part of my day, okay? I wasn’t going to go and mess it up.
RACHEL: I believe you. Okay, look, guys, there’s no point in us arguing anymore. We have go on in an hour
TINA: And we have no songs.
ARTIE: Perhaps I could improvise some of my def poetry jams.
RACHEL: No. Look, we’re going to do this the right way. Let’s start with the ballad. Mercedes, do you have anything else in your repertoire?
MERCEDES: Yeah, but it’s not as good as anything you’re going to sing.
RACHEL: No, we, we agreed…
MERCEDES: We agreed that I would sing “And I’m Telling You,” and that ain’t happening. Look, Rachel, the truth is you’re the best singer that we’ve got.
KURT: As much as it hurts me to admit it, and it does, she’s right. Rachel’s our star. If anyone is going to go belt it on the fly, it should be her.
RACHEL: Well, I do have something that I’ve been working on since I was four…
QUINN: Then I guess we have our ballad, and we can close with “Somebody to Love.” It’s a real crowd-pleaser.
PUCK: Yeah, that and a can of soup will guarantee us third place. We still need another song we can all sing together.
[FINN, having left the choir after discovering that the father of Quinn’s baby is not him but PUCK, enters]
FINN: I have one. I found the sheet music online. I used the Cheerios’ copier to make copies and then I trashed the thing. Mike, Matt, Brittany, Santana, you’re our best dancers, figure something out and we’ll all follow your lead.
MIKE: It’s going to be choppy.
FINN: Good. We’re best when we’re loose. Look, all we have going for us is that we believe in ourselves and what we’re singing about. If we can show the judges that… We might have a shot at this thing.
RACHEL: It’s good to have you back, Finn.
PUCK: We cool, dude?
RACHEL: You okay?
FINN: Don’t worry about me. Okay, this is all up to you now. You wanted the solo, you wanted the chance to be the star. This is your chance. Don’t screw it up.
‘Don’t Rain on my Parade’ sung by Rachel
Original Artist: Barbara Streisand
From the Scriptures:
You shall not cheat in measuring length, weight, or quantity. (Leviticus 19v35)
When you make a sale to your neighbour or buy from your neighbour, you shall not cheat one another. (Leviticus 25v14)
You shall not cheat one another, but you shall fear your God; for I am the Lord your God. (Leviticus 25v17)
Cursed be the cheat who has a male in the flock and vows to give it, and yet sacrifices to the Lord what is blemished; for I am a great King, says the Lord of hosts, and my name is reverenced among the nations. (Malachi 1v14)
My child, do not cheat the poor of their living, and do not keep needy eyes waiting. (Sirach 4v1)
Cheating to win is wrong.
Cheating so that someone loses is just plain mean.
New Directions find they have been cheated on by Sue Sylvester,
Finn finds he has been cheated on by Quinn and Puck,
The scene is set for revenge…
But this is not what they do.
Brittany (correctly described by Kurt’s dad as ‘that daffy cheerleader) owns up to being the source of the leak of the song list and the choir still decides to include the Cheerios.
Rachel manages to park her ego for a little and offers Mercedes her solo.
Mercedes then parks her ego and offers the solo back to Rachel.
Finn, cuckolded and so has good reason to be angry, still returns to the team.
Cheated on, they turn adversity into opportunity and go on to win the competition.
Would that I could cope with being cheated in the same way. My usual response is to indulge in a full-fledge pity party, sulk, threaten to walk off the job, and start to peruse the Situations Vacant columns in the Church Times.
When I’m really upset at being cheated I get angry and can easily go into full ‘Flame On’ mode and need to stay away from Social Media, those I cherish, pets, and anything breakable! Fortunately these times are getting less and less frequent but I have yet to learn to turn times of being cheated into opportunities to display God’s faithfulness regardless of mine or another’s failings.
One day I will learn that only a good example and a loving response has any chance of changing the behaviour of others. I can do little about how other people sin, (be it cheating or any other failing) I can only cope with mine and that is a job that will take a lifetime!
Perhaps when it comes to being cheated we need to look not so much at others and focus on being miffed, but at the Scriptural injunctions which remind us that our God is a generous God who gives more than we need or deserve and challenges us to do the same.
Ultimately, as are many sins, cheating is about faithlessness.
It presumes that God is not יְהוָה יִרְאֶה Yahweh Yireh (Genesis 22v9-14). The one who provides for us in our times of need.
It seeks to gain an advantage so that we can be somewhere, or become someone, other than who our Beloved intended.
It takes great grace and humility to trust God to provide that which others have stolen but did God not promise to restore the years consumed by the locust?
We worship a Redeemer who was cheated out of life itself and turned disaster into victory, and adversity into an opportunity to bring life others. Can we try to do the same the next time someone cheats us or steals something precious?
And, as New Directions remind us, ‘You can’t always get what you want but you get what you need’
In a time of destruction, create something:
a moral principle;
one peaceful moment.
(Maxine Hong Kingston)
- Forgive someone who has cheated you.
- Recompense someone whom you have cheated.
Reprise: Click here to watch the original version of today’s song
Prayers from ‘Prayers for Hard Times’ are copyright © Becca Anderson 2017
Scripture quotations are copyright © New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Transcripts of Glee Episodes were made with thanks to gleetranscripts.tumblr.com
These Reflections, ‘ ‘Gospel According to Glee’ are copyright © Andrew Dotchin 2021 and may be reproduced without charge on condition that the source is acknowledged