(Proverbs 21:19 KJV) It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.
Who are the nags of your life? The classics are wives and mother-in-laws. We could add to the list from experience: Husbands, children, neighbors, friends, bosses. We have all experienced it. You think you have problems, think of Solomon with his 600 wives and 300 concubines. I may have missed a few in the count but is there really a difference between 900 wives and 901. It must have been a problem because Solomon came back to this theme many times. I count at least five times in Proverbs that he refers to a “contentious” (4066) “woman” (802), Twice in this chapter. See verse 9.
For those of you who are into equal opportunity he refers to men with this adjective at least six times. The translators use different words, such as “strife” but that is not Solomon’s fault. The point of Proverbs is that we can be surrounded by all kinds of nagging influences. I guess it also implies that we can be nags ourselves. “Who me?” says you. “Yes, me,” says I.
Solomon says here it is better to live in the “wilderness” (desert NASB) (4058b) that with this kind of person. In verse 9 he suggests living on the roof. These are not recommendations of action but comparisons.
The way we are to deal with this is dealt with in the love chapter and a listing of the gifts of the Spirit: Patience, kindness, etc. God’s grace makes us the oil that lubes the wheels of our personal worlds.
So? To paraphrase a popular bumper sticker, “Nag happens!” Expect it. Start right now calling upon the Holy Spirit to prepare you to deal with it as a representative of Almighty God. Preparation will help when the inevitable happens.