I’m a fixer by nature, so when Mom told me that the toilet wasn’t filling up, I set out to fix the problem.
I grew up in the mountains, and our water supply was from a creek high above our house that fed a 10,000-gallon water tank. The tank had water in it, so the problem had to be at the toilet. As I shut the toilet valve off, a hard crunching sound was made in the valve.
“Something’s in there,” I thought to myself. Getting the valve shut, I unhooked the hose and opened the valve back up just a little to try and blow out the obstruction, but no avail. The blockage was behind the valve.
At 13 years old, you don’t have enough experience to think some things through. Determined to fix the problem, I took the valve off. I could now see what the blockage was: a little tree frog. (thus the crunching sound earlier)
You can probably picture what happened next. I unwisely poked a 16 penny nail into the hole to clear the blockage. What I forgot to do was shut the main valve off from the water tank. Backed by 10,000 gallons of water high above our house, there was a considerable amount of pressure that created a projectile out of the poor little critter. A little poke was all that was needed to free the blockage. (Did I mention I had my face in front of the unforeseen muzzle blast?)
In a split second my body was covered in water and frog remains. In fixing one problem, I created a considerably bigger one. I jammed my palm over the pipe and screamed for Mom. Fortunately, she finally heard me. It seemed like eternity before she was able to shut the main valve off to the house. On my palm was a deep impression of a copper water line. Both problems now taken care of, I re-assembled the toilet line.
Problem solved, but a bigger lesson learned. What lesson? Think things through before you take action. What do my actions have the potential to create? Sometimes, trying to solve a problem our own way creates a bigger one, in our marriages, our families or at work. Prisons and emergency rooms are full of people who didn’t really think things through. Thankfully, there is a God who understands human behavior and sent His Son Jesus to fix problems we created if we are willing to let Him.
My verse for the day is this: “There is a way that seems right to man, but in the end, it leads to death.” Proverbs 14:12
What does this tell us? Just because it seems right, doesn’t mean it is right. God’s Word has to be our foundation for life to work right. God didn’t give us His Word as a rough draft as though we are the editors of it, removing what we don’t agree with. It says what it says, and it means what it means.
Think things through before you take action! (and don’t poke frogs)