By Helena Rodriguez
“Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.”
– Matthew 6:33
By Helena Rodriguez
PORTALES — The dramatic faith presentations of Matthew 6:33 Academy, Inc., are big on visuals, with vibrant colors and oversized props, but low on spoken dialogue. However, the group’s spiritual messages seem to come across loud and clear, nonetheless.
Matthew 6:33 Academy, Inc., is a family-based, nondenominational, non-profit ministry formed in July of 2003 by Otis and Susan Davis and their three grown daughters, Christine, Holly and Leslie, whom all work with the husband and wife at Sun West Inc. Realtors.
After three decades of selling houses through Sun West, the Davises now want to sell families on the kingdom of God.
The Davis family has done 37 dramatic faith presentations in the area, including Clovis, Portales and Lubbock, and will be performing in House on June 20 and in Eagle’s Nest and Angel Fire in July.
The family says they’ve been received well.
“The response has been heartfelt, and judging from that, that makes us want to continue,” Otis said.
Matthew 6:33 Academy has developed a series of three presentations, which combine humor and comedy to get their spiritual messages across under the following themes: “Building Blocks of Christ,” “Reap What You Sew” and “Seek Ye First the Kingdom of God.” In addition, they have developed an eight-minute DVD to show people wanting a preview.
The leader of the family, Otis, said Matthew 6:33 Academy, Inc., has come about as the result of a process, taken one step at a time over the past 3 1/2 years.
“If a family today is in business together, like we all are, that can really tear a family apart, so we were thinking ‘How can we stay together?’” Otis said. “The girls, Sue and I agreed together that we wanted to do this.”
The idea of the actual dramatic faith presentation came about when a local pastor asked the Davis family to come to his church and do some kind of 15-minute presentation on keeping families together.
“That was a creative challenge for us, on how to get a message across in 15 minutes,” Otis said.
That is when Susan got the idea to use a lot of visuals, including big props.
“We knew that the person sitting in the back seat had to be able to see too, that’s the reason the props are so big,” Susan said.
In one dramatic faith presentation, the family members are each racing around in their own direction while the mother, played by Susan, is trying hard to fit in time for prayer and reading the Bible into their busy schedules. But these items keep being pushed aside by other things, such as sports and meetings. Finally, the family is forced to make time for these things before their household falls apart.
For the Davises, Matthew 6:33 Academy is a way to keep their family together.
Leslie, the youngest of the three daughters, said “Matthew 6:33 Academy is a mix of all of our talents. Dad is good at building sets and things and Mom is good at painting and doing artistic stuff.”
Holly said her talent is in doing computer graphics and power points and Leslie writes scripts and comes up with other creative ideas. Christine typically does lettering, painting the signs uses on their mobile sets and picks out music for the presentations.
It takes every member of the Davis family to make Matthew 6:33 a success and Otis is hoping that it can someday become a full-time venture.
Holly pointed out, “We are a family ministry, so we are most effective when we do our presentations in front of an entire family.”
Otis said that gives families something to talk about at the dinner table together, and that is the purpose of their presentations, to get families communicating more, and more importantly, to put God first in their lives.
Christine said the Matthew 6:33 Academy, which provides presentations in Spanish and English, was a family decision.
“We all had struggles that made us want to come together in this ministry,” Holly said.
In addition to their dramatic faith presentations, Matthew 6:33 Academy also provides instruction afterwards, and they also have a plan to help families read the Bible together in one year, basically reading four chapters a day.
“Fathers are the spiritual leaders of the family,” Otis said. “Fathers should take the initiative and lead their families by reading the Bible in one year.”