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Chip's Blog

For Hanging Birds

By February 14, 2018 11 Comments

So many people who come to the theater comment about the hanging sculpture of the seven white doves. The next time you come, you’ll know the rest of the story.

Originally, it was going to be a sculpture of a golden angel blowing a trumpet, but about the time we were building the theater, the new Mormon church was being completed in Lubbock, and guess what they put on top. We didn’t want to be copying the Mormons, so it became something of a dilemma.

Then one day during construction, I was threading my way through pallets of sheetrock on the floor, and happened to look up at that pediment. I wouldn’t call it a vision, but I could just see a swirl of white doves bursting out into the theater between the columns. It would represent the dispensation of the Holy Spirit. I knew that’s what it had to be.


We had a fellow supervising the crew at that time, whose hobby was bird carving, and he agreed to do the sculpture when the building was closer to finished. Well, before the theater was finished, he decided to move on. He’d been gone for a couple of weeks when it dawned on us that we had no sculpture. Another dilemma.

I’d never sculpted anything, that I can remember, but I decided to give it a try. The birds had to be made of lightweight material, and we had a lot of styrofoam scraps scattered around, so I began to whittle. Three days later we had seven doves.  I was as surprised as anyone, and when I look at them today, I still am.

But there’s more to the story. I got finished, and I was anxious to put them up there and see if they would look anything like what I had originally envisioned. We went to the theater on a Sunday afternoon, when no one else would be around, but when we got there, I realized I didn’t have any monofilament fishing line, which is what I’d planned to use. I didn’t want to drive thirty-five miles home and back, but every place in Post that might have sold fishing line was closed.

My sister lived in our folks home in Post after they passed away, and I called her to see if any there might be some monofilament line around the house. I was sure some of Dad’s old fishing gear was still there somewhere. Well, she remembered seeing a roll in some in some of my mother’s craft supplies, so I drove into town to get it.

Now, Mom had been gone for quite some time, so you can imagine my shock when she handed me the box of fishing line she’d found.

There, written in my mother’s handwriting on the box, were the words For Hanging Birds.  My jaw dropped, and there were definitely some goosebumps…until I looked a little more carefully at the writing.

Upon closer inspection, it actually said, For HummingBirds. Then I remembered a little hummingbird mobile she had made years before. The birds were suspended on monofilament line, and it was basically the same idea…a swirl of several (I wouldn’t be surprised there were seven) tiny hummingbirds, all suspended at different heights, with the same fishing line that now suspends my doves above the stage.

I’m not a big believer in coincidence. Just writing that, it gave me another little chill. I’m betting she just smiled.

Just want to remind you that Peter the Rock opens on the 24th. Click on over and pick a date. Can’t wait to see you!

What A Day Of Rejoicing That Will Be!

Join the discussion 11 Comments

  • Christy Morris says:

    You should tell just how big those ‘little’ doves actually are.

  • Linda Slatton says:

    ♥️ Chip,
    Thank you for sharing this incredible story/remembrance.
    I have always been so taken by these beautiful doves .. they give me such peace each time I see them.

  • Leslie Sloan says:

    WOW, that an amazing story of God’s direction and confirmation of what He wanted above the stage! Thanks for the story.

  • Reyes Pequeño says:

    Wonderful story! Thanks for sharing, it brought a feeling of joy to my heart. I will be looking up at those doves when Ricky and I go back.

  • Larry Haley says:

    What a great story !

  • RC says:

    I love that story!

  • Rhonda McNeely says:

    And don’t forget the brand name of the fishing line. FALCON. ANOTHER BIRD. YEP, just meant to be. Thanks for sharing this story!!!

  • chip says:

    Thanks everyone! So glad you enjoyed the story. It still makes me shake my head and smile. But you know, the truth is, if we could truly see what’s really going on all around us, we’d never get off our knees. And we’d never stop smiling.

  • Mike & Carol Farris says:

    Chip & Robin,
    We LOVE that story! I remember when you so graciously gave us & Daniel a back stage tour and told us about the doves. It gave me goosebumps then and still does. Our mighty God is so in control of every little detail. Thank you for letting God work through you at Ragtown!
    Mike & Carol

  • Glenn Polk says:

    Chip, I remember it so well when you came to me and said. “Does this look like a bird to you?” In your hands was the beginning of the first if the 7 doves. Three days later….there they were! The monofilament line was just the icing on the cake. You never cease to amaze me with your talent in so many areas. I look forward to bringing Peter back to Ragtown. My favorite role…ever!

  • S J Beneze says:

    I love that story! I will look at the birds in a different way from now on.

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