Healthy Leaders


You Married an Ox

Jess MacCallumJess MacCallum

Proverbs 14:4 says, “Where no oxen are, the manger is clean, But much revenue comes by the strength of the ox.”

Marrying a man is a trade-off, like having an ox around. Men are a lot like oxen, and I am speaking from experience. We are usually bigger and stronger and less astute than women. Again, my own experience. We are basic, and designed to work (whether we like it or not). We come with consequences, occasionally messy ones. Sometimes in the house-would-eventually-be-condemned kind of way, sometimes emotionally, financially, socially or spiritually.

Perhaps it’s more accurate to say that men generate mess as a by-product of being men. We plow ahead, ox-like, stomping forward toward some goal and for us to do our thing, other things have to take a backseat. That can look really messy. This is true of women to some degree, but my experience has been that women are better balancers of the consequences of their work. I am more ox-like.

But the good news according to the proverb above is that there is great reward with an ox! We are worth more than the mess we create. An empty manger may be more convenient, but there’s less value in it than a messy one.

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