“REED” This




This past weekend I was working in my wood shop. I don’t have air conditioning in the shop, so my shirt was basically soaked because of the heat. I was done and needed to bring some things back into the house. As I walked up the stairs to the back door, I noticed a sizable wasp nest tucked up in the corner of the eave a few feet from the door. I also noticed there were several wasps flying around that nest, so I was trying to get in before they saw me. Unfortunately, the door was locked, both my hands were full, and my key was in my pocket. Thankfully, Debbie saw me and came to open the door for me. Just as she was opening the door, I felt a sharp pain on my back quickly followed by a strong stinging pain. “Ow! Ow! Ow!”, I said as I jumped through the door to set things down out of my hands and reached back to try and swat the wasp that was stinging me, but I was too late. She had already flown off the back of my shoulder, but the stinging venom she left in me was still doing its work. (Yes, it was a female wasp. The males don’t have stingers.) A good ten to fifteen minutes went by before that sting died down. But I was left with a quarter-sized, hot to the touch, red, swelled up spot on my back that throughout the rest of the day would remind me, a little painfully at times, I had been stung. I got to thinking about that wasp stinging me. The first thing I felt was its stinger pricking me. My skin being stabbed was the first pain. Then, I felt the stinging burn of the venom being pumped into me. That was much worse than the stinger prick and was the reason for me crying out, “Ow!” Just like a shot at the doctor, the needle is not bad, it’s the stuff they pump into you that hurts. The difference being the doctor is giving you something to help, not venom.


That was the first time I had seen that nest. I usually will leave a wasp nest alone, as long as no one gets hurt by them. But if one stings me or another member of my family, then I will kill them and destroy the nest. Some of you might say, “But what about the ‘“Vengeance is mine”, says the Lord, “I will repay.”’ verse?” I don’t believe that applies to wasps. I can’t figure out why that wasp felt threatened by me. I was at least six feet away from the nest. Maybe she didn’t like the color of my blueish gray shirt or the fact that it was wet with sweat. I’m sure I will never know.


For the past year or more, it seems that a lot of people are like that wasp. They quickly feel threatened or are offended by the smallest things and are ready to light into someone with stinging words and actions. Maybe we are all tired of dealing with this pandemic and have had too much time to just sit and stew about something. Aggravation with masks and restrictions, racial tensions, and political bickering have been so annoying and unsettling. Whatever has put everyone on edge, no one has the right to lash out at someone else in anger or be rude. As Christians, we need to be like Jesus and only respond in love, keeping control of our emotions, and not letting anger lead to sin. Here are a few scriptures we all need to help remind us how God wants us to be.

“Stop being angry! Turn from your rage! Do not lose your temper – it only leads to harm.” Psalm 37:8

“People with understanding control their anger; a hot temper shows great foolishness.” Proverbs 14:29

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.” Ephesians 4:31-32

“And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.” Colossians 3:15

“May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to You, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.” Psalm 19:14


Remember, no one likes to be stung by a wasp. Let’s not be a stinging wasp to someone else with our words and actions. Let’s be the love of Christ.


Bro. Paul Reed


Tuesday, August 3, 2021