(a one act play in three parts)
©2005, Lani Wiens
a fresh flowers original
The Mom (goes by any number of names) - of an indiscernible age dressed in typical ‘mom’ dress for a day of cleaning, running after kids, etc.
The Girl (Abby) - approximately 4 ½ years old, dressed in a colourful array of clothing that doesn’t really match
The Toddler (Samuel) – 2 ½ years old, a precocious child who has a mind of his own
The Baby (Sasha) – 1 years old, loves to explore and climb stairs
It is a typical weekday morning in the Wiens’ household. Mom is trying to get a little cleaning done while training the girl in matters of household responsibility. The girl, the toddler and the baby are more interested in playing and carrying on.
Scene 1 (the laundry room)
Mom (handing Abby a small basket with some clean folded laundry in it): Here Abby your job to help Mommy today is to carry this basket of laundry up to Samuel’s room.
Abby (looking into the basket): But these aren’t my clothes.
Mom: I know, they’re Samuel’s clothes but you can help us both out by doing this job.
Abby (bending over as the weight of the basket suddenly becomes about the same as two elephants): It’s too heavy.
Mom (recalling how Abby has been able to carry loads twice that big of her own things): I’m sure you can handle it, let’s go. (scooping up the baby and a load of towels to put away)
The children all trail behind mom up the stairs.
Mom (setting down the baby and continuing on to the bathroom to distribute her load): You go ahead and put that away while I put mine away. (mom disappears into the bathroom)
Abby (in the other room): Samuel, come up stairs with me
Abby (more adamantly): Samuel, come up stairs with me.
Abby (in a sing song voice): Samuel, come up stairs with me, I’ll give you something.
Scene fades out as mom gets preoccupied with changing bums, etc.
Scene 2 (a little while later, mom is preparing lunch, children are playing in the dining room)
Mom (peeling something) Abby have you taken that basket upstairs yet?
Abby (coming into the kitchen): I can’t
Mom (trying to be patient and hear the reason behind the disobedience): Why not?
Abby: Because Samuel won’t come up with me.
Mom: But I asked you to do this job, you’re not obeying me.
Abby: But Mom, I can’t obey because Samuel isn’t doing what I want him to do.
Mom: Abby, you cannot make your obedience dependant on Samuel, you need to do what I ask you to do. It doesn’t matter what anyone else is doing.
Abby (pleading): But Mommmmmmmmmm
Mom: No buts Abby, do your job
Abby (harrumphing): Okay, fine, I’ll do it.
Scene 3 (after lunch, mom is cleaning up thinking that Abby has done her job and pleased with her little bit of wisdom on obedience – yours is not dependant on someone else’s actions – when she hears a crash which sounds alarmingly like something falling down the stairs, she runs to investigate glad that she is dressed in track pants for just such an event as this!)
Mom (breathes a sigh of relief as she sees that the baby is NOT what fell down the stairs. Puts her hands on her hips as she surveys the contents of that same basket of laundry now strewn all the way down the stairs and into the entryway and calls out): Ab - by!!
Abby and Samuel have come running to find out what the crash was all about, the baby continues climbing up the stairs oblivious to the commotion he has caused..
Mom: Abby, what is this all about?
Abby doesn’t say anything, looks around with her head down.
Mom: Abby, your disobedience is costing you more work, you now need to clean up all this laundry but more importantly you put your little brother in danger. Leaving something like that on the stairs is very dangerous for your little brothers, it just as easily could have been one of them falling down the stairs, now please clean this up and finish the job that I asked you to do.
Abby starts picking up clothes, while Mom fetches the baby off of the stairs and the toddler plays.
Later Mom notices that the repentant Abby has not only completed her job but has actually put away her brother’s clothes into his drawers. The Mom thinks to herself that this little incident is a flower – how often do we decide we can’t possibly do what God has asked because that person over there isn’t doing what we would like them to do. God isn’t going to listen to our excuses when He asks us why we didn’t do what He asked, they won’t hold any water. Our obedience or lack there of directly affects the other people in our lives, when we stall and wait around not wanting to do what God asks of us we can inadvertently put other people in a difficult or even dangerous spot. Disobedience also tends to lead to having to do more work in the end to make up for our initial shortfall. The little song that Mom sings to her kids goes through her head and she sings it as she walks off the stage, “Obedience is the very best way to show that we believe, doing exactly what the Lord commands, doing it faithfully. Action is the key do it immediately and joy you will receive, obedience is the very best way to show that we believe.”