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HIGHLOW  6'?m2f Ministry, discipleship, highs and lows

AMY -- (enters carrying styrofoam cup, looks up, searches the
stars for familiar constellations)

LIZ -- (follows a few seconds later carrying styrofoam cup) Hey.

AMY -- (not looking) Hey.

LIZ -- What are you looking at?

AMY -- I'm just enjoying the evening. It's nice and cool out
here.

LIZ -- Yeah, it is kind of warm inside.

AMY -- (nods, still looking up)

LIZ -- You were right, you know.

AMY -- About what?

LIZ -- About the highs and the lows.

AMY -- The highs and the lows.

LIZ -- You know, on opening night, I was higher than a kite. The
audience was really responsive. They laughed at all my funny
lines.

AMY -- (makes eye contact) You're a natural actor. The audience
loved you. You're going to go a long way in show business. I
meant what I said.

LIZ -- No. I'm not talking about my acting. I'm talking about
what you said about the emotional highs and lows. It finally
happened.

AMY -- You hit bottom?

LIZ -- How did you know it would happen?

AMY -- It happens to everyone. Nobody stays up all the time.
(raises cup) I guess that's why they have cast parties when the
show closes.

LIZ -- What do you mean?

AMY -- I think all actors hit bottom when the show closes. I
think cast parties were designed to let you down slowly.

LIZ -- I'm glad I'm here. This would be a terrible time for me
to be alone. The moment the curtain closed and the audience
stopped applauding, I cried.

AMY -- Me too.

LIZ -- Really?!

AMY -- I told you. Everybody has ups and downs. Even experienced
actors. (tearful) Even mature Christians. (turns away)

LIZ -- (approaches) Is something wrong?

AMY -- I'll be alright.

LIZ -- I'm a Christian. You can tell me.

AMY -- I just had a downturn in my Christian walk today.

LIZ -- Oh, I'm sorry. Two letdowns in one day.

AMY -- Yeah, but the funny thing is, the downturns always take
me by surprise, even though they're as predictable as closing
night.

LIZ -- I'm sorry, I'm afraid I can't relate. I'm just a new
Christian. I haven't had a downturn in my Christian walk yet.

AMY -- You will. It happens to all of us.

LIZ -- Why? I thought once you become a Christian, all your
problems are solved.

AMY -- (amused) I wish they were. But it doesn't happen that
way.

LIZ -- What do you mean?

AMY -- Well, it's true that your problems of guilt and
insecurity about life after death are solved. But as you mature
and take on a ministry, you take on a new enemy.

LIZ -- The devil.

AMY -- Exactly. As soon as he sees you making a difference in
the world, he will do everything in his power to bring you down.

LIZ -- Wo, I was thinking about taking on a ministry. Now I'm
not so sure.

AMY -- I'm sorry. I hope you don't think that I'm down because
of the devil.

LIZ -- You're not?

AMY -- Not really. What really gives you a high in Christian
service is knocking down the obstacles that the devil throws in
your way. I've really had some big triumphs.

LIZ -- But it doesn't last.

AMY -- Just as sure as there will be a letdown on closing night.

LIZ -- It doesn't have to be like that does it?

AMY -- Well, if Jesus and his apostles had their ups and downs,
I don't see how we could expect more.

LIZ -- Oh, I never thought about it like that before.

AMY -- Unfortunately, I think that today's low point was mostly
my own fault.

LIZ -- How?

AMY -- Well, mostly because I don't expect it or prepare for it.
I keep forgetting that I usually crash and burn right after my
biggest victories, when failure is the last thing on my mind.

LIZ -- Like the final curtain call.

AMY -- Isn't it odd that I am so wise in acting and so stupid in
ministry?

LIZ -- There must be something you can do, you know, to prepare
for the letdown.

AMY -- That's what I was just thinking about when you came out
here.

LIZ -- Oh, well, if you'd rather be alone... (steps back)

AMY -- No, no. I think you've just given me an insight into my
ups and downs with my ministry.

LIZ -- What's that?

AMY -- Ministry is a lot like acting, in that the more you
rehearse and the more experience you have the better you
perform.

LIZ -- That makes sense.

AMY -- My problem has always been that when things are going at
their best, I get to thinking that rehearsal and experience is
ALL there is to ministry.

LIZ -- What else is there?

AMY -- (amused) Think about the name: CHRISTIAN ministry.

LIZ -- (unsure) CHRISTIAN ministry.

AMY -- There's a reason why most of my crashes in ministry
happen right at the height of my successes. I forget who got me
to the height of success.

LIZ -- Christ. Of course, that's why they call it Christian
ministry.

AMY -- Exactly.

LIZ -- Do you think Christ causes you to crash when you get, you
know, arrogant?

AMY -- I don't think so. I think that when I pull away from
reliance and confidence in Christ, he merely removes his
protective hand from me and let's me suffer the consequences.

LIZ -- So, do you think that if you stay true to Christ, you
won't have any crashes?

AMY -- I may have fewer crashes, but I'll probably still have
some highs and lows.

LIZ -- What do you mean?

AMY -- I mean, after I reach an important goal in my ministry,
there will still be the letdown, like right after the final
curtain on closing night.

LIZ -- (cute) Well, maybe you should have a cast party for your
ministry too!

AMY -- Hey, that's not a bad idea. I don't think I celebrate my
victories enough. I think I'll do that! (exiting) Come on let's
party!

LIZ -- (follows, holding cup high) I'll drink to that!

2013 Bob Snook. Conditions for use:
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