Christian, Grimes, and Allgood

A Liturgy and Drama for Confession and Assurance

A Call to Confession

Brothers and sisters, hear these words from Galatians 5:

So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want (NIV, 1984).

Drama: Christian, Grimes, and Allgood

Characters: Christian, Grimes (who represents a devil), and Allgood (who represents the Spirit)

Setting: Christian is leaving work, walking out to the parking lot. Christian and Allgood are walking together. Allgood is silent throughout. Grimes is some distance away, perhaps in the balcony or an aisle. The story begins.

Christian: What a day! And I forgot where I left my car in this giant parking lot.

Grimes: [Has been waiting for Christian.] Leaving already, Christian?

Christian: Grimes!

Grimes: Yep, it’s me—your old friend. But it seems you’ve been ignoring me lately.

Christian: Yeah, well . . . Hey, I’d like you to meet a good friend of mine. Grimes, this is—

Grimes: Stop! I don’t want to hear his name. We just call him [scornfully] “Allgood.”

Christian: Allgood? Perfect!

Grimes: Anyway, Christian, I was thinking you and I might join the gang at Bubba’s for pizza.

Christian: Well, I am hungry.

[Allgood whispers in Christian’s ear.]

Christian: Right. I remember the last time I went to Bubba’s with the get-ahead gang. Buying beers for the right people, gossiping about coworkers, dishing out dirt on people we don’t want promoted . . .

Grimes: So?

Christian: No. I’m just going home to my family.

Grimes: Why? You’ll be missing out on a great time! [Pause.] Christian, we’ve got to talk.

Christian: [Christian sighs.] Fine. But I need to keep looking for my car.

Grimes: If you’d let me get closer to you, I could help you look. But that’s part of the problem. You keep me way over here at a distance all the time.

Christian: That way you have a lot less influence over me.

Grimes: And what fun is that? Think of all the good times we’ve had!

Christian: Thanks to—um—Allgood, I finally figured out that your idea of fun always turns out bad in the end.

Grimes: [Mocking.] Ohh! So Mr. Allgoody-two-shoes won’t let you drink a beer anymore.

Christian: Look, Grimes. It’s not about a beer. It’s about what kind of people I should spend time with, what my work goals should be, how I should live life!

Grimes: I’m still a part of your life too, Christian. What about the little story we came up with today to cover you for that late report?

Christian: [Discouraged.] Somehow I knew you’d bring that up.

[Allgood whispers in Christian’s ear.]

Christian: I shouldn’t have done that. It was a lie, a sin that I need to confess.

Grimes: Oh! Now Allgood’s got you using his jargon too. Just call it a little slip-up, tell yourself you regret it, and move on.

Christian: Look, Grimes, I’m tired of this and I’m tired of you. I’m not your slave anymore!

Grimes: Don’t talk like that about us, Christian. Anyway, seems like you’re Allgood’s slave these days.

Christian: It’s not like that with Allgood. And he’s a much better influence on me than you ever are.

Grimes: You still need me around to help you get ahead in life.

Christian: No, I don’t need you. I can’t seem to get rid of you, but I certainly don’t need you!

Grimes: [threatening] Careful, Christian. I have other tactics, you know.

[Allgood whispers in Christian’s ear.]

Christian: [relieved] Allgood will help me. He’s seen all your tactics before.

Grimes: Then you’d just better hope he’s always around.

Christian: He is.

Grimes: [returns to softer approach] Hey, let’s not fight, okay? The point is, you still want what I have to offer, as we experienced quite a few times today.

Christian: If you mean I’m still a sinner, yes, I am. But thanks to my true friend here, I’ve learned to hate the sin in my life.

Grimes: More jargon!

Christian: And I’m trying to live under Allgood’s influence instead of yours. [Pause.] Hey, there’s my car! [Christian and Allgood begin walking briskly offstage.] Bye, Grimes!

Grimes: [Also exiting] Oh, I’ll still be around!

Christian: Yes, but so will Allgood.

Prayer of Confession

Father, we praise and thank you for saving us from our sin and for sending your Holy Spirit to live in us. Yet we must also acknowledge that we do not always follow the leading of your Spirit.

Forgive us for slipping back into old ways,

for seeking to bring glory to ourselves rather than to you,

for focusing on selfish gain rather than on service to those around us,

for tearing others down rather than building them up,

for trying to get ahead of others rather than helping those in need,

for trusting in our own work rather than trusting in your providence.

Forgive us, and change us. Help us more and more to push away our sinful tendencies and instead listen to your Spirit. Make us more and more like Jesus our Savior. We ask this in his name. Amen.

Words of Assurance

We may take to heart these words, also from Galatians 5:

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit (NIV, 1984).

Reformed Worship 107 © March 2013, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship. Used by permission.