The Fleas of a Thousand Camels

Page Cole

Page Cole’s Theory of Life #1 states, “People are stupid.”

It doesn’t take a Harvard study to prove his theory true. Turn on the TV, take a look at Twitter. We’re not always stupid. Sometimes, in moments of clarity, we demonstrate Page Cole’s Theory of Life #2, “People are weird.” My grandmother used to say, “Everyone’s weird but me and thee…and I’m getting worried about thee.”

Which leads to Page Cole’s Theory of Life #3, “Always remember, I are people.”

It’s true, people can be frustrating. I once knew a pastor’s wife who said, “This ministry thing would be easy if it weren’t for all these stinking people!” We’re people. We’re messy. We’re prone to make mistakes. Mistakes that make other people want to curse. My grandfather had a favorite, “May the fleas of a thousand camels infest your armpits.”

That sounds wholly unpleasant – but from my experience, often well deserved.

Proverbs 14:4 says, “Where there are no oxen the stall is clean, but strength comes by many oxen.”

Or said another way, “Where there are no relationships you don’t have to shovel the mess people make, but strength comes by many relationships.”

Cole’s Theory of Life #3 is an important one. We’re all prone to moments of stupidity. Some people think I’m weird because I dip Braum’s french fries in my chocolate chip malt. Whatever the case, Proverbs 14:4 rings true. Without friends or family, coworkers, or the random strangers you meet at the super market, the stall is clean. But where’s the fun in that? Strength comes by many relationships.

Every relationship requires a little shoveling from time to time. Let’s get good at confessing when we’re wrong and forgiving when we’ve been wronged. Let’s value our relationships more than our own opinion. Scripture teaches the idea of mutual submission out of mutual respect. Love one another. Serve one another. Be patient. Be kind. Correct with humility and gentleness looking for the plank in your own eye before trying to deal with the speck in someone else’s.

Pick up a shovel, make the most of this glorious mess, and find strength.

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