It is often my custom to read a chapter of Proverbs every day. I love the wisdom contained in the pages. Even though I read it often, it seems like new nuggets of wisdom jump out at me regularly. My dad always used to suggest that to people, and I even suggest it myself, now. Proverbs has 31 chapters, and it is know as the book of wisdom. There’s one chapter of wisdom for every day of the month! As I was sitting in my comfy chair reading Proverbs 26 this morning, verse 17 stuck out to me so much. It was almost like a ton of bricks just fell in my lap!
Proverbs 26:17 AMP – “He who, passing by, stops to meddle with strife that is none of his business is like one who takes a dog by the ears.”
Not every pot we walk by in life needs to be stirred. I tend to feel like I know what is best not only for me personally, but for all those around me as well, and if you don’t believe me, just ask me! It’s something I have been working on in my personal growth and in my pursuit of less. I can wear myself out with a quickness trying to attend to the affairs and business of others. I am learning that managing my own life is enough for me.
I never would have considered myself a busy-body or a gossip – although that certainly applies with this scripture. What I’m talking about for me is feeling the need to share from my pearls of wisdom how things should be done, and if it still isn’t done in a way I would like, then I’d get in there and do it for them! Granted, some areas of my life demand that I get involved. Some areas of your life demand the same from you. These are our pots. They are our responsibilities. I operate a private school. What happens in that school is my business, and I need to be involved. I need to stir that pot. Those of you with children, your child is one of your pots. It is totally ok and necessary to be in your child’s business. I’m not asking anyone to let go of their responsibilities.
What we are talking about is letting go of things that we can’t or don’t need to control. We can’t make other people do what we want them to do! Believe me, I have tried!! It usually doesn’t end successfully. Do we really need to instruct our spouse on the proper way to chop an onion or load a dishwasher? My puppies wouldn’t like it very much if I picked them up by their ears, and Proverbs tells us the people that surround us won’t like it very much when we meddle in areas that are not ours in which to meddle. More often than not, my need to unnecessarily control will end in the other person resenting me, and I end up with needless emotional turmoil. Too many cooks in the kitchen makes for a bad meal. We can walk past the pot without picking up the spoon to stir it.
Just a side note: Leviticus 19:17 AMP tells us, “you shall not hate your brother in your heart; but you shall surely rebuke your neighbor, lest you incur sin because of him.” Galatians 6:1 AMP also says, “Brethren, if any person is overtaken in misconduct or sin of any sort, you who are spiritual should set him right and restore and reinstate him, without any sense of superiority and will all gentleness, keeping an attentive eye on yourself, lest you should be tempted also.” There are times that we need to get involved. There are times when we need to call sin for what it is; however, the majority of the time, we just need to focus on our own business and let everything else be.
PRAYER STARTER: God, grant me the wisdom to stay in my lane. Help me to know what to say and when to say it. Show me what pots are mine, and give me strength to let go of unnecessary control over others. Thank You for peace that passes all understanding. I thank You that the Holy Spirit leads, guides, and directs me in every step I take.