No matter how far away one strays from God, there is always a way back.
That's the message Robert and Elizabeth Muren hope people take away from their original spiritual musical "God with Us." Three performances are Friday and Saturday at Pikes Peak Center.
The show, which debuted at Andrew Wommack Ministries' Charis Bible College in Woodland Park last year, is set in ancient Rome, where the emperor is persecuting Christians. After the Apostle Peter and his followers are arrested and face execution, Peter must give them strength and encouragement by sharing stories from the Bible and his own life.
"All Peter has to give these people is trust and hope through his words," said Robert.
The show was inspired by Elizabeth, who held a longtime dream to do something beneficial for Jewish people. When she met fellow Norwegian Robert through their jobs at a Bible school in Norway, that dream finally came to fruition in the form of "The Covenant," an original musical the two conceived after marrying and moving to Israel.
The production traced the history of Jewish people from the beginning of the Bible to modern times. They performed the show around the globe for a decade with a traveling theater troupe and also wrote a second production that told the story of Jesus. "God with Us" is a hybrid of those two shows, Robert said.
The Murens and their four children have lived in Woodland Park since 2015 after being asked to head an artistic venture at Charis Bible College.
Elizabeth directs the production's cast of 130 that includes her, Robert and their children and Charis Bible College students. Professional actor Chuck King stars as Peter.
The two-and-a-half hour production is also a multimedia experience - film clips featuring the same actors and characters on stage play along on three screens behind the live action. Filming took place last year at The Great Passion Play in Eureka Springs, Ark., a biblical village with authentic-looking sets and animals.
"It's really emotional," Robert said about the musical. "It touches and becomes a powerful impact on people's lives."
JENNIFER MULSON, THE GAZETTE, 636-0270, JEN.MULSON@GAZETTE.COM