Summary: A monologue about a person struggling to find their true identity in Christ. The actor wears a bunch of different hats, explaining the different roles she has played in trying to find her purpose.
Style: Dramatic. Duration: 7 min
Actors: 1 M/F
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 12
Well, this is me. (pause) But I haven't always looked like this. I wasn't always this way.
(Steps to coat rack w/ hats displayed; puts bandana on) I used to be the rebel, no "rules & regulations" for me. I was hard hearted, spiritually tough. Or so I thought. Inside, I was dying.
My rebellion turned life into a battle, one constant challenge, I got beaten down routinely. (put on chef's hat) It wasn't long before I was in some really hot water! I needed a recipe for life. What ingredients could help me find purpose? How could I make sense of this mixture of pain, uncertainty, and emptiness? I didn't know what to do or where to turn. Much as I tried, the kitchen was too hot, my skills were too weak, and I couldn't "whip up" something to satisfy my hunger for meaning.
(Dons a safari hat) So I kept on exploring, looking everywhere – still searching, still seeking. And it was a "jungle" out there – I looked for answers through movies, talk shows, self-help books, college classes. I ventured into new worlds, hoping I'd discover myself somewhere out there. But to no avail. Then, an acquaintance invited me to church.
(Dons dress hat) I went in my Sunday finest, ready to impress the crowd. On the outside, I looked great, very "together." Inside, I was scared. I thought the answer was in the image I wore - all pretty and clean. If I just looked the part, if I stayed clean on the outside – good works, good deeds, good behavior – I could be good enough to earn God's favor. It wasn't long before I realized that wouldn't work either. (Takes off the hat, reflects for a bit.)
See, when I first started seeking God, (dons fire hat) I was only interested in buying "fire insurance." Attending church would be the answer. I could just go on Sunday mornings, do my time, and get out of Hell, like getting out of detention. I'd come in late and slip into a seat in the wings, sing a few songs, nod and smile at a few folks, and do my best to get out early before it became "permanent."
(Puts on cowboy hat.) So, here I was, the Lone Ranger. I thought I could do it all on my own – I'm independent, right? I can rustle up whatever I need. But I couldn't get the tune of that old song out of my head: "Desperado, why don't you come to your senses?" Hmm... Also the words of a certain prodigal son. One day I got caught in the lobby, talking to this woman. She invited me to her small group – encouraging me to try on something new – this thing called community. Wow. Hanging out with strangers at someone's house? That's a little scary. But she was persistent – and nice, and it sounded like fun... (pause)
(Puts on the hard hat.) Okay, I went. But reluctantly. I put on my hard hat, determined to keep from getting hurt. If I could keep this shell around me – a little distance – I might survive. With this protection, I could keep the real me buried deep, avoiding rejection or ridicule.
For the next few months, I wore a lot of different disguises – kept changing to keep the people in that group off guard. (Headband) I was the Fitness Trainer, busy making sure everyone else had their spiritually in check, counting off the mistakes of those around me – 1-2-3, sin, 4-5-6, sin. He's not working hard enough. She's lazy in her walk with the Lord. No pain, no gain. Feel the burn! I was so busy being judgmental, that I couldn't be vulnerable. (Jester hat) Or I would become the funny one – the life of the party – a zinger here, a wisecrack there, nothing serious for me, thank you. If I keep laughing and joking, there's no room for serious topics. There's no room for real growth, when everything's a punchline. (Nurse hat.) That grew old too – so I became the Nurse, the fixer, staying busy worrying over everyone else. Whether they wanted it or not, I was busy trying to mend their hurts, while conveniently ignoring my own. Staying preoccupied with them, I wouldn't have to deal with me.
But then something strange happened. (Puts on the baseball cap.) These people started putting me in the game. Slowly but surely, they started coaching me. Reaching me. Encouraging me. They put the bat in my hand, showed faith in me as a contributing member of the team, and somewhere, in the ninth inning of a tie game, I finally got that big hit I was looking for. I realized that the only hat I needed to wear was no hat at all – (takes off the hat) being a part of the community of Christ gave me my identity. No matter how I look, no matter what I wear, no matter how I feel. Christ loves me just the way I am - and this community is where I can be ... me.1
Our Scripture continues in 1 Corinthians chapter 12:
28 Here are some of the parts God has appointed for the church:
As I read this list, if you have EVER been one of these people, I would like you to stand:
first are apostles,
second are prophets,
third are teachers,
then those who do miracles,
those who have the gift of healing,
those who can help others,
those who have the gift of leadership,
those who speak in unknown languages.
29 Are we all apostles? Are we all prophets? Are we all teachers? Do we all have the power to do miracles? 30 Do we all have the gift of healing? Do we all have the ability to speak in unknown languages? Do we all have the ability to interpret unknown languages? Of course not! We should all seek the most helpful gifts from God and others. 31 So you should earnestly desire the most helpful gifts.