Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense. Pr. 19:11
When I was in high school, I worked in my family’s construction company. As part of one project I was working with the framing crew installing floor joist. It was there that I encountered a piece of wood that did not want to have a nail driven into it. I stood on a step ladder and attempted to drive a spike into that stubborn board. Time and time again the nail bent, and I had to pull it and start over. With each nail I became increasingly upset and began to angrily pound on the board out of frustration.
It was then that our foreman came over, looked at me, and with an impish smile on his face told me to look closely at the head of the bent nail. He then said something that I’ve never forgotten: “A man is only as big as the thing that annoys him.”
Wow! The head of that nail was less than ¼” in diameter, yet it had me so mad I couldn’t see straight. Sadly, I fear that far too often, the things that upset us aren’t much bigger than that nail. A driver won’t leave the passing lane, someone fails to say please or thank you, the Barista forgets to use skim milk in our $5 coffee, and, at the risk of being too prickly, we are told we have to wear a facemask in public – ouch. All these while annoying, won’t keep the sun from rising tomorrow. In the scope of this life, let alone eternity, they are miniscule.
The Scripture above says that a person of wisdom, maturity, and good sense won’t be easily angered. It describes someone who has carefully considered whether the “offense” is really worth getting upset over. It goes on to say this is to their glory. In other words, it speaks well of the person’s character and maturity.
How could this approach improve the atmosphere of your workplace, your home, or even the committee you serve on at church?
Ask yourself this morning, just how big are the things that annoy you? Make sure you don’t let the head of a nail get the best of you this week.
If it won’t matter in 5 years, don’t spend more than 5 minutes getting angry about it. – Anon.
Live this week on purpose,