Cast: Rizpah (R), Heman (H), Job (J) & Tom (T)
R: Hi Heman – You here again?
R: Third time this month isn’t it?
R: Me too. Same old same old.
H: It’s unfair, Rizpah. You never catch St Paul in here.
(Job walks in)
R: Tell me about it. Wish I’d written to the Corinthians. You all right there, Job. You back again? In Room 101 with the other forgettables.
J: Obviously. What are you two in for?
H: Same old. No one bothers to read my psalm or write worship songs about Psalm 88, too gloomy. Instead it’s all David David David. Psalm 23 and all that. Just the positive bits mind you. He wrote plenty of gloom as well. But no one sings about that anymore. No one thinks a bit of healthy Victor Meldrewing can possibly be included in worship. So I’m consigned to this place. Forgotten. Just because I was honest and wrote my number on a day when I was feeling pretty down in the dumps cause my neighbour had kept me up all night, my recycling had been left behind again and I had a cataclysmic headache. I like to think I wrote my psalm for all those folks in the congregation who’d rather strangle the person next to them instead of giving them a cheery hug.
J: Absolutely. I poured my soul into my book. 42 Chapters I wrote, and just cause they’re not full of wonder and miracles most people avoid them. I’m considering re-doing it as Job-lite. 10 smiley Chapters with a few bits of misery tucked away between the shiny, happy ‘isn’t life a blast’ moments. People might find it more palatable then.
R: No! Don’t sell out! I know it seems as if people want quick and easy answers, but life isn’t like that. They need our songs and stories. Most people are struggling along. When I was on that hillside, grieving over my boys and beating the vultures away, I hung onto the songs of struggling and sadness. People need that, not just happiness and hope. They need reality. It sets them free to be honest.
J: Wow! You’ve thought this through, haven’t you?
R: Every day. Every single day.
(They fall silent for a moment)
H: I do quite like some of David’s happy clappy numbers though. Bit of rock’n’roll, you know.
J: Yea, they kept me limping along when the boils were particularly bad.
R: Sure. But our stories complete the picture. Faith doesn’t make everything rosie. God’s right there in the darkness too. Perhaps especially so. Jesus didn’t save the world when he made 180 gallons of free wine. He did it on a tortured hillside.
J: (Sighs) Look at us, eh – the forgotten three. Oh no – the forgotten four, here’s another overlooked soul.
A fourth person, Tom, walks in.
R: Hi, you back again?
T: Yea, I’m fed up. No one sees me as three dimensional, I’m just a walk on part with weak faith. I was only being honest. Speaking my mind. And what do I get? How do I go down in history? Doubting Thomas. Great. Thanks very much.
R: Come and join us, Tom.
J: Yea, and you know what, cause this is a Christian sketch the audience may well be expecting a nice neat ending that makes a point.
R: Yes, well, instead, let’s just leave it open-ended…
H: So they can make up their own minds about it.
Tom: Ooh… I doubt if that’ll go down well…
(All walk off)