Now That’s Annoying!

Jeff Rasche

Annoyed Redhead2 TSP 174262414It’s easy to get along with people who are respectful and thoughful and kind. The challenge is to accept people as friends when they have really annoying habits. Why should Christians try to get along with annoying people? God created and loves every person. Besides, annoying habits are often a way of looking for love and attention. (Of course, brothers and sisters are just plain annoying. It’s their job!)

The apostle Paul offered some good advice: “Don’t mistreat someone who has mistreated you. But try to earn the respect of others, and do your best to live at peace with everyone” (Romans 12:17-18, CEV).

Here are 13 really annoying things that people do (but just because these things are annoying is not a reason to mistreat the really annoying people who do them):

  1. Hum while chewing their food or explain that spaghetti looks like a pile of dead worms just as you put a forkful of spaghetti in your mouth.
  2. Laugh at their own jokes and stare at you expectantly, long after you’re ready to stop laughing.
  3. Clip their fingernails at the dinner table, remove polish from them in the car, scrape them on a chalkboard, do drum rolls on the desk, show everybody the fingernail that got caught in a car door and now is dark blue and flaps.
  4. Interrupt all of your stories with, “That’s nothing, listen to this!”
  5. Burp disgustingly at the dinner table, and then to be cute say, “Thank you very much,” instead of “Excuse me.”
  6. (Males) Forget to lift the toilet seat or forget to put it down. (Females) Complain whether the seat is up or down.
  7. In the car, sing while wearing headphones, count road stripes, take off their tennis shoes and prop their feet on the seat, tap another person on the shoulder and pretend they didn’t do it.
  8. Smoke, or chew tobacco and spit into a cup. Yuck!
  9. Snore or suddenly stop snoring just when they have a good rhythm going.
  10. A phone conversation: “Is Sue there?” “Yes.” Breathing as they wait for you to say something else. Finally, “Do you want to talk to her?” Now that’s annoying!
  11. Lift a bandage to show off the stitches from their surgery.
  12. Spit every time they say a word that begins with a T or a P.
  13. Jump up suddenly, hollering in pretend fear, and throw a plastic spider into the lap of a person sitting next to them. That’s annoying—funny, but annoying.



devozine Teen Discussion TS 200274216-001How should Christians deals with annoying people? First Corinthians 13:14a (CEV) says “Love is kind and patient.” Being patient means trying not to lose our temper and belieivng in God’s ability to help people change. People often outgrow annoying habits. Meanwhile, we should try to understand. We should also extend our love and friendship. At times we need to confront other people about their annoying habits, but even confrontation can be kind.

The next time you are annoyed, remember: “Love is kind and patient.” If anything is more powerful than feeling annoyed, it is the love of God.

Jeff Rasche is a writer and pastor in Camp Point, Illinois.

—from devozine (May/June 2000). Copyright © 2000 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.
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