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DIFFERENT SIDES - written by Tanis Harms
TOPIC:       relationships, be peaceable, understanding
SCRIPTURE:   Ps.34:12-22, Is.1:17, James 3:13-18
Style:       drama/conversation:  a couple gets
.            an object lesson on how they have to learn
.            to see things from other people’s
.            points of view during arguments
Cast:        HUSBAND, WIFE, MEDIATOR
Set & Props: large teapot, table, 2 chairs

SCRIPT:

(MAN and WOMAN sit on opposite sides of a table,
each looking at the different sides of a teapot.
The MEDIATOR sits and watches skeptically.)

HUSBAND   I’m telling you, you’re nuts.

WIFE      Are you calling me a liar?
.         I can’t believe you don’t trust me!

HUSBAND   I trust you, I just think you’re full of it.

WIFE      That sounds like the same thing to me.
.         You’re such a brute!

HUSBAND   At least I don’t whine.
.         (mocking)  'Oh, you’re such a brute.'
.         Why is it always my fault?  Huh?
.         I’m ALWAYS wrong.

WIFE      And why is it you ALWAYS bring THAT up –
.         that you’re always wrong.  And then this
.         is what ALWAYS happens after that -
.         I take the blame so YOU can feel better.
.         Therefore, I’M always wrong.

HUSBAND   See! I’m always the bad guy,
.         and You’re the perfect one.
.         You have such a martyr-complex.

WIFE      I’m not perfect. And I've never claimed to be.

MEDIATOR  Whoa! Okay, so what’s really the issue here?
.         How did this all start?

WIFE      Well, ahhh – what was it about again?
.                                                     2
HUSBAND   You were accusing me of something.

WIFE      Naw-ah!

MEDIATOR  Why don’t you just – take a step back –
.         take a breath – and think.

(WIFE and HUSBAND spend a moment stewing and staring
at the teapot.)

WIFE      Ah! I remember now.  As you can see,
.         there is a big stain on this teapot.

HUSBAND   And as you can see, there isn’t any stain.

WIFE      Why must you be so contrary.

HUSBAND   Why must YOU be so contrary.

MEDIATOR  Okay.  Now before you go off and down
.         that old rabbit trail again,
.         why don’t you see it from each other’s
.         perspective and gain some understanding?

(HUSBAND and WIFE look at each other.  HUSBAND finally
motions with hands like ‘be my guest.’  WIFE gets up and
goes to stand behind HUSBAND.  Looking at the teapot
from his side, she nods slightly then sits down.)

WIFE      Okay, I see now why you don’t believe me,
.         but you have to see my side.

(HUSBAND gets up and looks over WIFE’s shoulders,
then sits down.)

HUSBAND   I never saw it that way before.  You’re right.
.         There IS a big stain.  So I understand that
.         you've tried everything and it won't wash off.

MEDIATOR  So you’ve reached an understanding.
.         This should be followed with reconciliation.

HUSBAND   I’m - sorry.

WIFE      Apology accepted.

MEDIATOR  Well, that was easy.

HUSBAND   (sighing) Easier than I thought.
.                                                     3
WIFE      It was more humbling on the accepting side.

MEDIATOR  So now, how can there be some resolution
.         and peace?

WIFE      I realize your concern that there is no money
.         right now to buy a new teapot, so I have
.         no problem waiting until we do have enough.

HUSBAND   I’m happy with that.

(HUSBAND and WIFE stare at each other, not knowing what
to do next.)

HUSBAND   Now what do you do?

MEDIATOR  How abooouuut, go!  Move on!

HUSBAND   Sounds good.  We’ve never really done
.         THAT before.

WIFE      It has been a while.  This’ll be good.

(HUSBAND gets up and puts out his hand for WIFE to take.
They exit together.)

MEDIATOR  It can be just THAT easy.

(Shrugging, MEDIATOR leaves in the other direction.)