October 30, 2023
The Bible Edge
Practical Points to Ponder from Proverbs
Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go:
Why? The very next verse explains why; Lest thou learn his ways and get a snare to thy soul. That’s why.
So, I dropped my wife off at the pizzeria to pick up a couple of take-out pizzas. The parking lot was small and narrow; on one side was a fire lane, on the other side in front of the store fronts there was parking. When I pulled into a space, I was crooked, and one tire was not in my space. I backed up and turned parallel to the fire lane and was going to back into the space I just left. A small pickup truck pulled up right behind me so I rolled down my window and motioned him on so he could exit the lot.
But no! He didn’t want to exit, he wanted to tell me I was parked in a fire lane zone. So he walked up to my window, started thumping it with his hand, and motioned for me to roll the window down. I did not. This made him more vocal and ugly, ugly, ugly with the language he chose. He yelled that I was putting everyone into danger by parking in the fire lane, who did I think that I was, I didn’t care about anyone else, what if a fire truck had to enter that lot. I just stared at him through the window which incensed him further. I just sat there looking at him.
Finally, he ran out of expletives and got in his truck and left. I’m glad he was not my friend.
Not to be outdone. My wife and I were eating breakfast at one of those buffets in our town. Minding our own business. I was sitting at the table and my wife was at the buffet (I’d already grazed it over), there was a commotion, a woman was mad at everybody and letting them know it. As my sweet bride came back to our table that woman saw her and began using words that should not be spoken softly, much less loudly for all to hear. These words were hurled at my wife. We just sat there and looked at her, finally she was so mad she couldn’t even talk and stomped out of the restaurant. We are glad she is not one of our friends.
Why so angry? We don’t know, but there are those like that. Just mad and needing to let everyone know. Through experience I have learned to not only ignore those throwing such tantrums, but I have also learned to watch them very carefully, being prepared if they escalate from words to violent action. Of which I am always prepared.
Why? Upon responding I may end up acting like them and snare myself in words or actions I may regret for a lifetime. Of all the practical points to ponder from Proverbs this may be the most practical. Just make no friends with the angry. You won’t pacify them, change them, or reason with them. Just let them go, forget them, and by all means don’t go along with them.
William T. Howe, Ph.D.