Exe Valley Mission Community


It~s the little things...

It is the little things in life that cause the most bother. Something tiny and inconsequential can take on disproportionate significance!

Take the other day. There I was, hard at work, beavering away, when I suddenly fancied a cuppa. But while waiting for the kettle to boil, I did something, a tiny weeny something, a something that I didn't have to do, and wouldn’t normally do, but I did something which would have consequences for the rest of the day.

And here's what I did. I opened a cupboard door and started to tidy things up. I didn't need to. I didn't have to. I was just passing the time, while the kettle boiled.  I picked up all sorts of half empty packets, the tail end, fag end dregs of suppers passed, and started to put them together. And then - and here's where it all went wrong - I picked up two opened packets of couscous!

Oh! If only I’d known! Oh! If only I had left them on the shelf! But no! I picked them up, and realising that there was too much to put in one packet, I poured the couscous into an empty jar. Of course, there was far too much to squeeze in, and because, by now the kettle had boiled, and I really hadn't intended to sort out the cupboards, I chucked the superfluous couscous into the sink, before running the hot tap to swill it down the drain.

Running the hot tap! Running the hot tap! What was I thinking of? Running the hot tap! What a stupid, foolish, idiotic thing to do. Before I could utter the word, 'Tabbouleh', both sinks had blocked, with water attempting to gush onto the kitchen floor.

I tried poking in a skewer. Nothing. I looked for a plunger. Nothing. I waited a bit to see what would happen. Nothing. Then I drove to a well-known DIY store. "Where do you keep your plungers?" I asked an assistant. "We don’t," came the reply. "Haven't you heard, we’re being taken over? Plungers and other such equipment won't arrive until August!" August!

I decided to resort to chemicals - well, not chemicals exactly, but their enzyme blasting, couscous zapping, environmentally friendly equivalent - and hot footed it back home. I poured them in and watched. Nothing.

After a lot of faffing about, another trip into town, stronger, less enzyme, more chemical liquids, and the arrival of a Church Warden with plunger, (looking remarkably like the Statue of Liberty), as well as one ably used by a female family member, there was a sudden gloop and a gush and the water drained away.

And the moral of this story? Apart from the obvious hazards of chucking couscous down the sink, it occurred to me that a grain of couscous is tiny. It's hard to imagine that it could cause such a kerfuffle. But even tiny things, left to fester and grow can accumulate and cause enormous damage. Anger, for example; old hurts and resentments, quarrels and tittle-tattle. It's good to take heed to wise words, challenging us to keep short accounts and to deal with things properly, through being kind and forgiving. Ephesians 4:31-32 says: You must put away all bitterness, anger, wrath, quarreling, and slanderous talk - indeed all malice. Instead, be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ also forgave you.

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