I pushed the large bottom drawer-front to close it after replacing the wok. But, as often happens, the drawer wouldn’t stay shut. ‘Why does it always do this?’ I asked myself.
Not that I would know the answer. I’ve no idea how these drawers are supposed to work. Maurie fitted them when we were renovating the kitchen some years ago. As a non-cabinet-maker at the time, he had to learn the Kaboodle system on the run. I think he did a good job, too. We’d chosen the ‘push-to-open’ ones from Bunnings, and when we ran out of replacement parts, Maurie asked the store for spares. They sent boxes of them; more than we’d ever require. We concluded that the manufacturers already knew we’d need them, and we have! Now another drawer was asking to be refitted.
Maurie’s become proficient at it, but his body isn’t as supple as it was when he began installing the new kitchen cupboards. I don’t complain like I used to; I know he’s done his best. A man in his eighties can’t be expected to kneel on the hard floor and ‘unpick’ a huge drawer and reconstruct it every time it won’t close properly!
So once again, I merely pushed the front of the heavy-saucepan receptacle and hoped its pre-programming would kick in. Not this time, unfortunately.
As it slid out towards me, with what I felt was its subtle-drawer-smile, I gave it another nudge. Well, I admit, it might have been more than a nudge; a shove, perhaps? But it kept ‘smiling’, as I rubbed my sore hand!
‘You stupid thing’, I said. ‘Stay shut!’ After repeated attempts to make it obey, even using the side of my leg, I gave up and left it open. Now, every time I look at it, my disgust arises. I dislike anything that refuses to conform to my idea of neatness.
In the past I might have lashed out at the designer, or the manufacturers of the whole bank of them. I’ve even blamed the innocent drawer itself! But this time, I thought, Oh well, at least it’s easier to open now. I can curl my fingernails into the crack and pull it out every time I need to cook something big in a large wok or a tall, fat pot.
As I walked away from the uncooperative drawer, I felt a nudge myself, and sensed God was giving me a reminder about the way I still want things as I want them to be. (There’s another way of saying that…!) But then I remembered how this drawer would sometimes remain closed if I pushed it more patiently. Was I doing damage to its mechanism by being too intolerant, or angry?
I heard God’s gentle whisper: A soft answer turns away wrath. Ah! Words from the Bible! Yes, gently does it. It doesn’t always have to be a harsh response.
Not just with inanimate objects like recalcitrant kitchen fittings, but in many areas of life, we can use this Bible verse from Solomon’s Proverbs (15:1 KJV) to give us peace. I’ve found it a wise saying that he bequeathed to us for keeping in the file of our minds.
I like the Passion Version too, which includes an old Greek translation:
Respond gently when you are confronted and you’ll defuse the rage of another. Responding with sharp, cutting words will only make it worse.
I can use it when I face situations that bring out the worst in me! Thank you, Holy Spirit for teaching it to Solomon, and a special ‘thank you’ for giving it to me.