Summary: A dramatic monologue to use at communion.
A Visit to the Upper Room
A Dramatic Monologue
The setting is the upper room.
The character is Thaddeus, one of the 12. He is straightening the room.
Thaddeus turns is acts surprised to see someone.
Oh, Hi there! You startled me. I did not expect anyone to be up here with me. My name is Thaddeus. What is yours? (Extends his hand in greeting.)
Well, I’m glad to meet you. Are you a friend of the homeowners?
Oh, really! You would like to ask me questions… about Jesus…. And about that night! Well, I’d love to tell you about it.
It all started in Bethany, that morning. Jesus sent Peter and John ahead of us to Jerusalem with the instructions to prepare a place where we could eat the Passover meal. I remember those instructions He gave them. Strange, to say the least.
He told them that when they entered the city they would see a male servant fetching water in a jar. They were to follow the servant. Then they were to say to the owner of the house, “The Teacher sent us to ask you, ‘Where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover meal with my disciples?’”
Don’t you think that is strange? I mean that Jesus would know that a servant would be fetching water at the very moment that Peter and John would arrive in the city? How could He do that? I’ll tell you… the Rabbi was constantly surprising us.
Why one time we were in Capernaum and the tax collector demanded that we pay a two drachma tax. Well, we had no money to pay a tax. What did Jesus do? He told Peter to go fishing. In the mouth of the first fish he caught he would find a four drachma coin. He was to use that to pay the tax.
And you know what? HE DID! He caught a fish and there was the coin in its mouth!!!
Another time Jesus sent Peter and John into a town and told them that they would find a donkey with her colt both tied just inside the gate. Untie them and bring them to me. Glory to God, they were there, just like Jesus said.
That Jesus was always doing stuff like that.
There rest of us were following Jesus into town that evening and here come Peter and John. You guessed it… the servant was there and the room was ready just like Jesus said it would be.
What a teacher. What a Savior.
We all followed Jesus upstairs to this room and everything was ready and waiting for us.
As we entered the room there was a basin, a pitcher and a towel for us to wash our feet. I saw it. We all saw it. I think we would have used it if we had not been in such a hurry to get our seat. It was not that we did not want to wash our feet. It would have felt great after the dusty two mile walk from Bethany. But the Passover meal is special. And each of us wanted to get the best seats. You know, the ones closest to Jesus. John was the youngest and he got the seat on Jesus’ right hand.
Jesus just sat there and watched the rest of us in our mad scramble for positions. It did not strike me then…. But there was a sad look on his face.
When we were each in our place, we looked up to find Jesus. He had gotten up from the table and moved to the far corner of the room, where the basin was, and was tying the towel around his waist.
All at once it was like a knife stabbed me in the heart. I had watched the towel tied around the waist many times. Always by the house servant as he prepared to wash the feet of guests. Now, here was Jesus, my Rabbi, my leader… the miracle worker, the most holy and pure person I had ever known, preparing to do the lowly and menial work of a servant.
What made it so painful was that I had seen the basin. I had known what it was for. But I, like the rest, though that is no excuse mind you…. I had sought a position of honor, a place of privilege and now Jesus was doing what I had scorned.
The lowest had sought the position of honor and the highest had bowed to a position of service.
The truth, the guilt was like a hot iron on my soul. I hung my head in shame. I did not dare to meet the gaze of the others. I was ashamed of myself. I was ashamed of them. I wanted to run and take the towel from Jesus and wrap it around my waist and wash His feet. But guilt and shame held me in my place… like chains. I was paralyzed. I would look like a hypocrite. So I sat there, silent and ashamed.