Joe's Wait

Play #: 1614
Pages: 13 pgs
Cast: 4 m.

A modern retelling of the Job story from the Bible. A fascinating discussion about the differences in modern religions. In the waiting room of an airport in the American Midwest, Joe Barnes, a prosperous businessman, is met by his doctor, Ed Tishman. Joe's wife and children were aboard a plane that crashed at the Tel Aviv airport, and he's waiting to hear what happened to them. Dr. Tishman offers pills to calm Joe's nerves, but he refuses them. Joe recounts his toughness in riding out business losses, but confesses his confidence and faith have now been shaken. Ed tries to convince him that good men are not punished by God knowing better, Joe falls into suicidal despair. Bill Schuman, a television evangelist, overhears their conversation and introduces himself. He proceeds to argue that God rewards just men with material success, and counsels Joe to confess his sins publicly or accept his sad lot as fair. Father Elihu, a young priest, has also overheard the conversation and joins them. Politely but firmly, Elihu disagrees with them all, and insists that God is beyond man's comprehension yet never acts unjustly. He invites Bill to say the Lord's Prayer, in the middle of which Joe hears a voice and stands up startled. Thinking he has become schizoid and is hallucinating, Dr. Tichman tries to persuade Joe to come home with him, but Elihu now insists they give Joe privacy. Alone, Joe talks to God aloud. He is given the grace to believe that there is a reason for everything even if he does not understand it, and the courage to trust in life. Joe then learns that his wife and children have survived the crash unscathed. Jubilant, he shares the news with his friends. About 20 minutes.

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