VALUABLE 6'?m2f Discipleship, ministry, made in God's image

(scene: one small end table)

LIZ -- (enters cautiously, carrying a small box as if it could
explode if shaken)

AMY -- (follows) What you got there?

LIZ -- (gasps, fumbles box, regains control) Do you have to
sneak up on me like that?!

AMY -- I didn't sneak up on you. What's in the box?

LIZ -- (setting box cautiously on table) I don't know. The
pastor just gave it to me and he told me it's really really

AMY -- Well, open it and find out. (reaches)

LIZ -- (resists) Ah, I'm not so sure. What if the air or
humidity makes it deteriorate?

AMY -- So, you're not going to open it?

LIZ -- I don't know.

AMY -- Did the pastor tell you NOT to open it?

LIZ -- Well, no. He just said it was really really valuable.

AMY -- So, let's open it. Then if we find out it's fragile or
perishable, we'll seal it up or cushion it or whatever it needs.

LIZ -- I suppose we could do that. But... I don't know.

AMY -- Listen, when the pastor gave it to you, did he say he was
giving it to you for safe keeping or did he intend for you to
see what was in it?

LIZ -- He didn't say. He just said it was....

BOTH -- ....really really valuable.

AMY -- I heard you.

LIZ -- So, what do you think? Should we open it... or not?

AMY -- Well, if the pastor gave ME a box and didn't explicitly 
tell me NOT to open it, I would assume that he wanted me to see 
what's inside.

LIZ -- You think?

AMY -- I think.

LIZ -- But he said it was....

BOTH -- ....really really valuable.

AMY -- So you said.

LIZ -- Alright, I'll open it but if I get into trouble... if
anything happens... I'm telling the pastor it was YOUR idea.

AMY -- I've got broad shoulders. Open the box.

LIZ -- (opens box as if dismantling a bomb, steps back, gasps)

AMY -- What's in there?

LIZ -- See? I told you it would deteriorate. There's nothing

AMY -- (peers into box) There's something in there. Look.

LIZ -- (peers into box) Just those little pieces of paper. It's
probably just packing material to protect whatever it was that

AMY -- On the other hand, perhaps the little pieces of paper are
what the pastor wanted to give you.

LIZ -- No way! You can buy little pieces of paper like that in 
any office supply store. Can't cost more than a nickel. The 
pastor said that what was in the box was....

BOTH -- ....really really valuable.

AMY -- So you keep reminding me. Look on the other side of the
papers. Maybe theirs a really really valuable message on them.

LIZ -- (reaches into box as if being contaminated, pulls back)
You do it.

AMY -- (reaches) You are such a wimp. (pulls out one or two
small slips of paper) There's names written on them.

LIZ -- (looks over Amy shoulder as if expecting an explosion)
First names or last names?

AMY -- Both. (holds paper over shoulder) Do you recognize this

LIZ -- Yes.

AMY -- (pages) This one?

LIZ -- Yes.

AMY -- (pages) This one?

LIZ -- (turns away) Yes.

AMY -- (digs through box) There's nothing else in the box except 
these little slips of paper with names written on them. Do you 
have any idea who these people are? (turns) Well?

LIZ -- Yes.

AMY -- Well, who are they?

LIZ -- (turns) You know that new ministry I started last month?

AMY -- Yes.

LIZ -- Those are people who work with me on the ministry.

AMY -- And?

LIZ -- (turns away) And... that's all. They're just people who
work with me on the ministry, that's all.

AMY -- Why do I think there's more to this than you're telling

LIZ -- Well, the truth is, we haven't been getting along lately.

AMY -- So, you've had some disagreements.

LIZ -- Yes.

AMY -- (holds out hands questioningly, long pause) Are you going
to explain this... this really really valuable box or am I going
to have to guess?

LIZ -- (turns) Well, it was MY ministry!

AMY -- Oooo! I detect more than just "not getting along lately".

LIZ -- Those other people just jumped on the bandwagon and
before you know it they think THEY'RE running things. And I just
let them know what I thought.

AMY -- And what you thought was...

LIZ -- Well, it didn't come out the way I meant it.

AMY -- Or maybe it came out the way you meant it, but the way
you meant it didn't sound very Christian.

LIZ -- How did you know? Did the pastor call you?

AMY -- I'm just putting two and two together. What about this

LIZ -- Well, before the ministry started, the pastor warned us
all that by far the most valuable asset in our ministry is the

AMY -- The people.

LIZ -- Yes. He said that the people were made in the image of
God, and that Jesus died for each person in the ministry, and
that our treatment of others in the ministry ought to reflect
how God values them.

AMY -- So this is the pastor's way of reminding you...

LIZ -- (sighs) I've been treating these people like they were
low lifes, as if their opinion didn't matter. Some of them...
some of them I treated as if they weren't even there, as if they
were nobody.

AMY -- (holds up a few slips) So, these aren't packing material
for something more valuable.

LIZ -- I treat packing material better than I treated some of
those people. If I was a non-Christian looking at my ministry, I
would be glad I wasn't a Christian. It would have been better if
I hadn't started the ministry at all!

AMY -- (examines slips) Hey, look here. Under each name is their
phone number. Why do you suppose the pastor included their phone

LIZ -- (takes slips, picks up box) You're not even subtle!
Alright, I'll call them. (exiting) I'll call them all and

AMY -- (follows) Say, be careful how you handle that box. It's
...really really valuable.

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