Daily Wisdom

Meditations on the Book of Proverbs

6 Sending a message by the hands of a fool

   is like cutting off one’s feet or drinking poison.

7 Like the useless legs of one who is lame

   is a proverb in the mouth of a fool.

 

 The fool can be relied upon to cause trouble, regardless of what his intentions are. He cannot be trusted with anything important, as he will find a way to disappoint. Once the damage is done, what can be done to remedy it? You may, like the amputee, never fully recover. Or as the one who has been poisoned, you may take weeks to regain your strength. The messenger is just as important as the message, do not put your future in the hands of a fool.

 “Like the useless legs of one who is lame is a proverb in the mouth of a fool.” The fool is not only unreliable, he is also incompetent. He may have the same tools as everyone else, but he doesn’t know how to use them. As the lame are incapable of walking, so the fool is incapable of contemplating. He may be able to repeat advice, but he will not put it to use.

 When dealing with fools, be careful not to expect too much. Consider what could go wrong, and take measures to prevent it. Don’t be surprised when your plans are frustrated, and be prepared to deal with hassles. Don’t let impatience and anger take hold of you, or you may find more in common with the fool than you thought.   

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