Lately it has been my practise in the middle of my sermon to pick out from the congregation, without warning, characters to act out the well known parable of “The Good Samaritan.” Up until Sunday I had never experienced anything untoward... but last Sunday this all changed when Rev Bob (ex Dean of Dunedin Cathedral) played a trick on me.
I chose Rev Bob to be the man beaten up and lying on the ground. By the time it came to the part in the story for the Good Samaritan to pick him up, Bob failed to move; he lay on the ground limp. After a few attempts by the “Good Samaritan” to lift him, he still lay prostrate on the ground.
Oh no, I thought, he has fainted
I asked him out loud, “Bob are you ok?”
Still no response.
Heck, I thought, maybe he has died!!
It was not only me sounding distraught. The whole congregation looked worried as they craned their necks to have a look. I was about to shout out for a Doctor when one of Bob’s eyes opened... then the other. Following this, a huge mischievous smile enveloped Bob’s face. By now I was close to panic mode. I raced down the aisle and helped the good Samaritan try to get Bob to his feet. Bob would have none of that.
“I had a good little rest down there and I am quite capable of getting up on my own thank you all the same!”
As he rose to his feet in Lazarus like fashion, the whole congregation was in an uproar, clapping and cheering that one of their own had tricked the naïve visiting preacher, who by now was mightily shaken up but very very very relieved that Rev Bob was well and truly alive, kicking and laughing!