Our pastor is starting a series on the popular "Prayer of Jabez" and I wrote this drama to coincide with his first part on 'Blessings.' This particular sketch deals with saying a blessing over our food. I thought about how saying grace might be the only time people actually ask for God's blessing on their life (Bless this food.) And even then, many times, it's either not sincere or simply ritualistic.
Tom: A husband
Jennifer: A wife
2 plates with sandwiches and potato chips
(LIGHTS UP CENTER STAGE)
(Tom is sitting at the kitchen table reading the newspaper.)
Jennifer: (Comes walking in) Here you go, Tom. Lunch.
Tom: Great. Thanks, Hon. I’m starved. (puts down the paper and grabs for the plate)
Jennifer: (pulls it back and then sets it on the table in front of him) Not so fast there, Speedy Gonzales. We’ve got to say grace first.
Jennifer: Yeah. Grace. You know, the blessing.
Tom: Oh, yeah, right. The blessing.
Jennifer: Go ahead.
Jennifer: Hey, I made it. The least you cand to is pray over it.
Tom: Um, ok. Sure. (He closes his eyes and in one quick motion, rocks his head forward, almost touching the table and let’s out a big grunt. His head comes back up and he begins immediately eating his sandwich.)
Jennifer: (Jennifer looks at him appalled.)
Tom: (Tom finally notices her and with a mouthful of food says…) What?
Jennifer: What do you mean “What?” What was that?
Tom: That was the blessing.
Jennifer: How do you figure? Who in the world says grace like that?
Tom: (taking another bite and trying to make light of it) Well, it’s kind of this thing that the guys and I do at work… you know…. Sometimes.
Jennifer: Well, I’m not one of the guys at work and we’re not… you know…
going to do it anytime. Now are you going to say it right?
Tom: (sighs and puts down the sandwich) Sure. Okay. Here we go. (He quickly folds his hands and says this prayer so quick it’s almost difficult to understand) "God is great, God is good. Thank you Lord, for this food. Amen.” (He starts shoving the sandwich back in his mouth.)
Jennifer: (Once again, she is appalled, mouth open and staring at him.)
Tom: (Notices her and with a mouthful of food…) Now what did I do wrong?
Jennifer: What do you call that?
Tom: The blessing!
Jennifer: Really. And whom exactly did that bless?
Tom: God, of course. I mean, come on. That prayer had all the key words (starts counting on his fingers) God, Food, Thanks. See?
Jennifer: Key words, huh? It must have lasted all of 2 seconds.
Tom: (takes another bite) Hey, it’s not the "quantity" but the "quality."
Jennifer: Really? And you came up with this all on your own?
Tom: Er, um, uh.
Jennifer: (glares at him and says sternly...) Close your eyes. (Tom does but when she gets half way through starts eating the chips loudly) Dear Lord, thank you so much for this food and we pray that you would bless it to our bodies and… and…(opens eyes and yells at him) WHAT ARE YOU DOING?
Tom: What? Can’t we eat and pray at the same time?
Jennifer: (still yelling) NO! What’s wrong with you?! Did you grow up on Mars?! It’s SIMPLE! You take a few moments to pray to God and thank Him for the food and THEN YOU EAT! Now, fold those hands, mister, and PRAY RIGHT THIS TIME!!!
Tom: I can't.
Jennifer: WHY NOT???!
Tom: I’m done.
Tom: Heh. Um, I’m done. (Big stupid grin as he holds up the empty plate)
Jennifer: (Looks at the audience) Sorry ladies, he’s taken.
(LIGHTS OUT FAST)
(c) 2001 Dave Marsh