By Trevor Fletcher


Two lifeboat men have just returned from a rescue mission, and discuss their experience.


Two lifeboat men


Mark 10:17-31 ‘How hard for the rich man…’


(The scene opens on two lifeboat men, Old Bob and Young Bob (yes, really – why not?).  Young Bob looks wet and cold and has a towel wrapped round him.  Old Bob hands him a mug of hot drink.)
Old Bob: Here, get that down you – it’ll warm you up.
(Both drink from steaming cups.)
Old Bob: So, Young Bob, how do you feel after your first lifeboat rescue?
Young Bob: Cold.
Old Bob: Well you would.  Minus 15 degrees out there before you even start to take into account the wind chill factor.  But apart from cold, how do you feel?
Young Bob: Difficult to put into words really; a bit of everything, I suppose.  Excited - you know, all pumped up.  Happy – for the lives we saved.  That made it all worthwhile.  But…
Old Bob: But what?
Young Bob: But as well as all that I feel, sort of… sad, I suppose …
Old Bob: Sad?
Young Bob: Yes.  Because of the people we couldn’t save.
Old Bob: We did our best, Young Bob.  We did our best.
Young Bob: I know that, Old Bob.  We couldn’t have done more.  You sent out the lifeboat, we threw out ropes and buoys – even dived into the water ourselves to save some of them.  But some of them were still lost.
Old Bob: Why do you think that was?
Young Bob: That’s just the point really; that’s what makes it all worse.  It was all so unnecessary - almost as if some of them didn’t want to be saved.
Old Bob: Didn’t want to be?
Young Bob: Yes. Some of them acted as though the lifeboat wasn’t there at all – ignored the ropes and our shouts.  Some even swam away from the lifeboat.  Some of them clung onto the ship as though that could save them but in the end it just dragged them down with it.  But what haunts me most of all is that there was one man…
Old Bob: What about him?
Young Bob: He showed every sign of wanting to be saved - shouting for help, trying to get the lifeboat.  He would even have made it but for what he was carrying.
Old Bob: What was that?
Young Bob: Some sort of treasure box it looked like.  Something he’d brought with him off the ship, I suppose.  Whatever it was it must have been really important to him.
Old Bob: Why do you think that?
Young Bob: He just wouldn’t let go of it, even though it cost him his life – it dragged him under and we couldn’t get to him in time. We kept shouting at him, ‘Let go!  Let go!’ but he wouldn’t.  He just kept clinging on.  Then it was too late.  Is it always like this Old Bob?
Old Bob: Young Bob, I know it’s hard and you’d like to save them all, but there’s always some who won’t be saved and then there’s some who would be saved but won’t let go.  You probably noticed that all the ones who were saved were carrying nothing; they saw the chance of being saved, so left everything.  But if people try to cling onto their possessions, they will drown.
Young Bob: So what can we do?
Old Bob: Just get out there and tell people, Young Bob.  Just tell them.
Copyright Trevor Fletcher, all rights reserved.
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