"It is a man's honor to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to quarrel" (Proverbs 20:3)
Ms. Baxter's pre-calculus class in high school. I'll never forget it. Not because math made such an impact on my life. I assure you, it didn't. But, I remember after Ms. Baxter would teach, give the assignment, and we'd complete it, the fireworks would begin. Billy, Deann, Tina, and myself. We were the four that could argue about anything. Religion usually. We'd fight it out pretty good. Years later, I begin to realize the futility in those arguments. I for one, wasn't really interested in hearing their points of view...just to make my own point louder and last. It took a while to begin to realize that the honor I was seeking, was the honor I was forfeiting, because it's never found in pride.
What is so common, and accepted even, in our society is to push through a debate until one's argument has been "victoriously" made. But the Bible says that it's a man's honor - his splendor, his value, his worth to avoid strife. This simply means the one who rests form chiding, contention, and controversy. It takes a lot more honor to rest from being "right" than it does to push through and attempt to prove being right while creating or continuing an atmosphere of conflict in the process.
Like with all people, one of my greatest strengths is also one of my greatest weaknesses - my mouth! I am a natural arguer. I love to debate and am fairly good with working with words. And, like many, I like to make my point and am not a fan of being proved wrong. However, what God continues to show me, is that honor, TRUE honor, is found in victory. But, we haven't pursued the real victory. That victory is mastering our mouths, our methods, and our motivation.
Today, vow before God to be a person of honor; to avoid strife; to NOT get the last word in; to trust God to sort it all out without you having to prove the point. In THAT, there is great honor!