Our family has a miniature dachshund named Bella, and she is as sweet as they come. If there is such thing as a lap dog, she definitely qualifies. When people enter our home, she quickly greets them and barks until they acknowledge her presence.
Recently, my son was getting up from his chair and accidentally stepped on Bella, causing her to yelp before retreating to her bed. Realizing she may be hurt, he approached in hopes of consoling her. When he reached out with his hand to pet her on the head, he was met with an unexpected response instead of the normal nose nudge or lick. This time, Bella growled and lunged forward, snapping as though she wanted to take off a chunk of his hand.
Humans are a lot like animals. When we have been physically or emotionally hurt, we tend to react negatively toward those who love us. Maybe it's a normal defense mechanism or a deeper-rooted problem, but either way, we must resist the urge to growl or even snap at those who truly care about us.
Sometimes, we treat those who are closest to us a lot worse than those outside our love perimeter. It may come from an unresolved conflict or even a childhood situation that triggers our emotions, but a festering "wound" only grows into a full-blown infection with devastating consequences.
The word of God tells us to be gentle, "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger," (Proverbs 15:1). So, be careful when communicating with those who matter most to you.