Okay with Waiting—Day 3
Proverbs 25: 15
“By forbearance a ruler may be persuaded, And a soft tongue breaks the bones.”
I enjoy watching people, and I have learned a lot about others from watching and listening to them. Something I have observed from years of watching and studying people is; we often handle unyielding individuals or situations in a way that is most natural for us.
Some of us fuss, some get angry, some become passive, and others silently harbor ill feelings.
Our devotional passage today presents us with a ruler who has to be persuaded and he is compared to the difficulty of shattering bones.
Let us think about that for a moment, what does this proverbial metaphor arouse within us. We are going to attempt to persuade the ruler who is not easily convinced. In Hebrew the word for ruler is, qâtsîyn, kaw-tseen, this is one who rules or commands; this person is understood as having authority. To attempt to persuade the ruler is likened to shattering bones. What difficulty.
Bones are not easily broken, and a great deal of pressure has to be applied to break them. Nonetheless, despite the stiffness and rigidity of bones, bones can still be broken.
Here is where the tension starts to rise within us. How does one break bones without applying pressure?
A ruler is a hard person and not easily broken. However, God has a way, and that way is made known to us so that in the midst of dealing with stubborn people we are not left discouraged and without hope.
Powerful and obstinate, this word combination drudges up unwelcome feelings for most people, especially when we consider convincing individuals with those traits.
For most of us, the prospect of attempting to address someone or something that is obstinate seems like a waste of time. This is the reason for the averseness we often feel when facing such obstinacy. We wonder if we have a chance of changing the situation or the person’s mind.
God says it is possible to change the mind of someone or situations that are rigid. He says it is by being patient. Not seeming patient. Not acting patient. Not sounding patient. Not looking patient. Being patient.
Question: How do you behave when faced with obstinance? Do you believe you have a license to misbehave when someone in leadership is unbending?
Lord, help us to behave ourselves when in disagreement with those in authority and always honor you, Amen.