Cross Training

Biting Back

Galatians 5: 14,15 says:

“The entire law is summed up in a single command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.”

This verse reminded me of a poem my mom read to me when I was little, Eugene Field’s The Duel.

The Duel
by Eugene Field (1850-1895)

The gingham dog and the calico cat
Side by side on the table sat;
‘T was half-past twelve, and (what do you think!)
Nor one nor t’ other had slept a wink!
      The old Dutch clock and the Chinese plate
      Appeared to know as sure as fate
There was going to be a terrible spat.
            (I was n’t there; I simply state
            What was told to me by the Chinese plate!
)

The gingham dog went “Bow-wow-wow!”
And the calico cat replied “Mee-ow!”
The air was littered, an hour or so,
With bits of gingham and calico,
      While the old Dutch clock in the chimney-place
      Up with its hands before its face,
For it always dreaded a family row!
            (Now mind: I ‘m only telling you
            What the old Dutch clock declares is true!
)

The Chinese plate looked very blue,
And wailed, “Oh, dear! what shall we do!”
But the gingham dog and the calico cat
Wallowed this way and tumbled that,
      Employing every tooth and claw
      In the awfullest way you ever saw—
And, oh! how the gingham and calico flew!
            (Don’t fancy I exaggerate—
            I got my news from the Chinese plate!
)

Next morning, where the two had sat
They found no trace of dog or cat;
And some folks think unto this day
That burglars stole that pair away!
      But the truth about the cat and pup
      Is this: they ate each other up!
Now what do you really think of that!
            (The old Dutch clock it told me so,
            And that is how I came to know.
)

How easily are you offended? When someone “bites” you with an unkind word or action, are you quick to “bite” back? Do you make the fur fly or are you a peacemaker?

Proverbs 19:11 says:

“A man’s wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense.”

If there is any chewing out to do, let God handle it.

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