Daily Devotional LifeJourney Church (MCC)

_: Mad Libs Style

March 13, 2012 • Category: Proverbs

Today’s scripture: Proverbs 5:1-14 (NRSV) (The Message) (KJV) What might God be saying to me?

My thoughts (Julie Walsh):

When I was a kid, I used to buy all kinds of Mad Libs books. I would tote them along to sleepovers where my girlfriends and I would huddle in the living room under our makeshift tent, fashioned out of blankets propped over the kitchen chairs. We turned into a giggling gaggle as we filled in the blanks of every story, each one more hilarious than the last.

Can you believe they are still making those things? I picked one up before Brent and I left for a road trip once and we found it amusing for oh, five minutes. Not nearly the depth of humor it held in childhood.

While today’s Proverb may seem clear and direct — a warning hearkening back to the Ten Commandments — there may be more wisdom than directly meets the eye. Let’s apply the Mad Libs principle and take out the key word “adulterous woman.” In its place, insert one ofyour greatest vices, stumbling blocks, shortcomings, or addictions.

For example, envy often causes a significant number of problems. Slip the word “envy” into the space for “adulterous woman” and the passage suddenly resonates with new meaning and context.

3 For the lips of envy drip honey, and her speech is smoother than oil;
4 but in the end she is bitter as gall, sharp as a double-edged sword.
5 Her feet go down to death; her steps lead straight to the grave.
6 She gives no thought to the way of life; her paths wander aimlessly, but she does not know it.
7 Now then, my sons, listen to me; do not turn aside from what I say.
8 Keep to a path far from her; do not go near the door of her house.

The same can be done for nearly any word that may better resonate with you, such as judgment, pride, blame, lies, meth, or money. Sometimes when we view a passage like this one through our 21st century lens, scripture can become rich and vibrant, providing meaning in the context of what concerns us today.

The Bible is not a text to throw silly games at, but it is alive with a word for each one of us. Sometimes we just need to fill in the blanks to pull out the broader message.

Prayer for the day: Lord, sometimes I feel too __________ (feeling) and my problem with __________ (problem) gets in the way. Please __________ (verb) me how to better __________ (action) today.

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the suggestions on the How to Pray page.

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