This past Thursday morning I thought I would go outside and mingle with the VBS kids during their play time.  Well, I was enjoying my time and minding my own business when all of the sudden I was attacked from behind by an unidentified little boy (Zach Brown) who opened fire on me with a water pistol.  I took after him on foot only to discover there was also a little girl (Zoe Brown) who was packing some water heat.  They continued their relentless assault until I couldn’t take it anymore; I had to defend myself so off to the kitchen for a pitcher of water.
The pitcher of water was exactly what I needed to keep the growing crowd of little tikes at bay. Until, of course, one of them ran to fetch a pail of water from the swimming pool out front of church.  By now my water was gone, which left me open to further attack—and attack they did.  So I ran for the water hose lying on the grate on the west side of church, nothing better to win a water fight than with an endless supply of water.  As I grabbed the hose I thought to myself, funny how water fights begin with a little squirt gun but then usually escalate into buckets and water hoses.
And isn’t this incident true of most of our conflicts.  You’re just enjoying your life, minding your own business, and someone attacks you.  Usually the initial offense really isn’t that big of a deal, but because we’re offended, it just wouldn’t seem fair to let it go, so in order maintain justice, we seek revenge.  Have you ever found yourself hurting someone because they hurt you?  And how often doesn’t the little offense become the straw that breaks the camel’s back which leads to the big meltdown.  “OK, that did it, you hurt my feelers; I’m never talking to you again.”
Well, how about a little wisdom and truth to set us free.  May it never be said of us that we are like this person in Proverbs 26:21, “A quarrelsome person in a dispute is like kerosene thrown on a fire.”  Here’s a better response, “A man’s wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense” (Proverbs 19:11).  And may it be said of us, “Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out” (Proverbs 16:32).
So I bet your dying to hear what happened after I grabbed the water hose?  Nothing, the water valve had been turned off, the war was over.  I surrendered and laid down my hose.  And how about you, could it be that it’s time for you to put down the bucket or lay down the hose?
Drenched, but at peace,

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