Recently I have spent a number of days reading Proverbs 26 in my devotions and particularly thinking about Proverbs 26:17 “He that passeth by, and meddleth with strife belonging not to him, is like one that taketh a dog by the ears.”

Our family had many dogs when I was a child. My favorite dog was Tuffy. She was well-mannered, playful, very obedient and even knew some sign language. Her good spirit would change quickly, though, if I tried to play with her ears. She would nip, bark and wrestle to get away.

We do no good when we overhear strife (literally “contention, controversy”) among others and decide to intervene without an invitation to do so. If it is not your strife then leave it alone. Each of us should learn that the business of others is their responsibility. Getting involved will put us at risk to receive the pain of their response. The fact that we have “passed by” gives us neither a right nor a necessity to take those matters into our own hands. Matthew Henry stated it so well, “Let everyone with quietness work and mind his own business, and not with un-quietness quarrel and meddle with other people’s business.”

Written by Mike Williquette, BWM Business Director