Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam;
    so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out. 17:14

This month I am exploring the book of Proverbs with my small group Bible study. Today as I read the 17th chapter this verse stood out to me. The image of a dam breach is an effective depiction of a quick and harsh reaction to a tense situation. King Solomon extols the value of patience here. Being patient in a situation like this allows you to remain in control of a situation instead of the situation controlling you.

Which are you: a Thermostat or a Thermometer

I like the analogy of a thermostat as opposed to a thermometer. A thermometer reacts to the temperature of the air around it. Whereas a thermostat controls the temperature of the air around it. Being patient and calmly approaching a tense situation allows you to be like the thermostat. You’re more in control of yourself and the situation.