Christmas Song Blog Day 18 – Who Would Imagine A King?
Today I got to spend the morning working with our Sunday School children. They had dress rehearsals before church, then did their play for the whole congregation during the time normally reserved for the sermon.
I am sad to report that my camera shut off (card full) halfway through the performance, so I don’t have video (hopefully someone else got some), but the play went off really well. Aside from some nervous shoving between the sheep and the camel, everyone hit their marks and their lines, and the congregation seemed to enjoy themselves as much as the kids.
What made this play so special was that it was written by our children. We almost didn’t let them do it. We were crunched for time this year, we only have a handful of kids in Sunday school right now, and the adults were all pretty emotionally spent after the election. The grown ups all voted for a traditional pageant with an adult narrator. The kids, however, had other ideas. They wanted to do it all: write, direct, and star. Thankfully we have a policy of giving our kids a great deal of leeway in our congregation because they were right. When we wanted to pull back, they pushed us all forward, and that’s exactly what we needed right now.
They ended up writing a short, simple play about how messages from God get twisted around when humans get involved, and how what we want from God is rarely what we get, but what we get is usually what we really need.
They named the play A Different Kind of King, and I am sharing the (rough) script below.
Angel and Star at the front of the church
Angel: God told me there’s going to be a new king on earth. You have to go light the way for Him.
Star: A new king. There have been lots of kings all over the world. What’s so special about one more?
Angel: This is going to be a different kind of king. This king won’t come from men. This king will come from God. Go get ready.
Star: Okay. Where am I going?
Star: Bethlehem? That is different!
Star wanders up higher on the stage.
Star: A different kind of king? A different kind of king. I like that. Maybe this will be a fancy king. A shiny king. A glittery king. I sure would like that.
Wiseman and Camel come on and stare up at the Star.
Wiseman: Is that new star? It is! What does that mean?
Wiseman: What can it be? What can it be?
Wiseman: What can it be?
Star: Oh come on, it means a new king! A very different kind of king. REALLY different.
Wiseman: I think it might mean a new king. A very different kind of king. Maybe this king will be a smart king. A king that wants to learn. A king that surrounds himself with smart people.
Wiseman starts to walk off, but camel keeps looking at the star.
Wiseman: Come on, Camel. Let’s go look for a king.
Wiseman and Camel wander off, but Herod comes up from behind them.
Herod: A new king? Preposterous. I am the king. I am the best king. I do all the best things. No one has more respect for the poor and needy than I do…except what if the people like the new king better than me? I can’t let that happen. This new king must be stopped.
Herod exits. Camel and sheep walk up on stage
Camel Exits: Sheep runs over to Shepard, who is looking up at the star.
Shepard: That sure is a pretty star.
Shepard: What? A new king? I don’t want any more kings. Kings are mean. Kings don’t care about people like me.
Shepard: A different kind of king? Maybe I’d go see that.
Kids clear stage.
Choir sings “Who Would Imagine A King.”
Mary and the baby on stage, other characters come in one at at time and take a peek at the baby.
Angel: There He is. Your new king.
Star: That’s it? A baby? Wrapped in swaddling clothes? That’s not fancy. Where’s the glitter?
Wiseman comes in: A baby? Babies aren’t smart! Babies can’t even talk.
Animals come in, sniff baby.
Shepard: A baby? I don’t understand.
Mary: This is going to be a different kind of king. He will be called Emmanuel, which means God with us. He isn’t the kind of king the world is looking for right now, but he will be the kind of king the world needs. He has come to show us all how to love God and how to love our neighbor, and that is what will make Him the King of Kings.