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A Matter of Faith — Brother Pratt and Sister Truitt

How Brother Pratt asked Sister Truitt to read the scriptures and almost got In trouble with her mother.

Dear Naomi:

I thought I would ask you to read this passage from the book of Proverbs at the beginning for our Adult Sunday School class next Sunday. We often ask members to read a portion of scripture but this will be different. I’ll start out by saying I want you to do sort of a dramatic reading, then will ask you to come to the front of the class and will hand you a microphone. I’ll be standing to the side with a copy of this letter in my hand along with my usual Sunday School notes with my collar microphone turned on.

What the audience does not know is that we will be doing a mini-drama together in front of them. We will demonstrate in the natural boy-girl tensions that are implied here, what Solomon meant when he wrote about being wise.

Here’s how it should go.

(Naomi walks up to the pulpit and picks up scripture. She starts to read in a normal, monotone voice)

Proverbs 1:

20 Wisdom is crying out in the street; her voice is loud in the open places;

21 Her words are sounding in the meeting-places, and in the doorways of the town:

22 How long, you simple ones, will foolish things be dear to

you? and pride a delight to the haters of authority? how long will the foolish go on hating knowledge?

(Joe slumps against the pulpit, looking bored. Naomi notices.)

23 Be turned again by my sharp words: see, I will send the flow of my spirit on you, and make my words clear to you.

24 Because your ears were shut to my voice; no one gave attention to my out-stretched hand;

(Joe shakes head, mumbles something about, “ . . . it’s so boring.” Naomi focuses on text.)

25 You were not controlled by my guiding, and would have nothing to do with my sharp words:

26 So in the day of your trouble I will be laughing; I will make sport of your fear;

27 When your fear comes on you like a storm, and your trouble like a rushing wind; when pain and sorrow come on you.

(Joe looks off in the distance, mumbles “Are we done?” Naomi pauses, glares at Joe. Silence for a moment. Joe realizes she quit reading, turns to Naomi and, innocent as the day is long, mouths the word “what?” with a shrug of his shoulders. Naomi looks angry, waits a second, then continues reading, her voice rising slightly.)

28 Then I will give no answer to their cries; searching for me early, they will not see me:

(“Boooring,” Joe mutters with a grin, shaking his head, looking to the audience for support. Naomi focuses on words, now somewhat angry. Joe seems to enjoy her discomfort.)

29 For they were haters of knowledge, and did not give their hearts to the fear of the Lord:

(Naomi is now glaring at Joe who hasn’t noticed yet. Holding the copy of the Bible, or her notes, she now addresses the words directly at Joe. )

30 They had no desire for my teaching, and my words of protest were as nothing to them.

(Joe still enjoys her anger, looking to the audience for support. Females in the audience are now ready to strangle Joe. Joe now pretends to be shielding himself from Naomi’s verbal onslaught. Audience by this time is fully engaged in both the words and the age-old conflict between men and women.)

31 So the fruit of their way will be their food, and with the designs of their hearts they will be made full.

32 For the turning back of the simple from teaching will be the cause of their death, and the peace of the foolish will be their destruction

33 But whoever gives ear to me will take his rest safely, living in peace without fear of evil.

(Naomi hurls down notes, stomps off the platform in disgust. Joe watches her trying to look innocent and perplexed. He shakes his head and then, standing behind the pulpit and lifting up the Bible in front of the audience says, “What is her problem?”)

This will be my way of starting on the subject of being wise and how we don’t often listen to good advice. Wisdom is pictured as a woman who can’t remain silent when we do foolish things, even if she looks bad in the process.

You might want to tell your mother about this before she comes to class so she doesn’t get mad at me.


Joe Pratt

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