The meaning of papercuts

The conspiracy that is papercuts!

You know when you are going about your business, a godly air of contentment with the universe, a quiet bonhomie with the world and all who reside within – that kind of “okay” day?

And then a sheet of paper goes all Scissor Hands and takes a slice for no good reason. That little stinger when you least expect it, definitely don’t deserve it, and certainly take nothing from it. We have named it a curiosity – a “papercut”.

Paper Cut … makes it sounds innocuous … innocent … blameless even.

Well I am here to tell you the reality. I am here to uncover the conspiracy theory we have bought into all these years.

That little sucker is a vicious little sucker! That “papercut” is the devil himself hiding in shiny white paper. It is evil incarnate, and I am going to holy war on the devil himself!

FACT: what else can cause quite the immediate cussing and swearing?
FACT: what else can cause “paper” to become the immediate dark underbelly of all that is evil?
FACT: what else can keep doing that as I innocently catch a “slice of skin” for the rest of the day?

This is no mere “accident” – this is spiritual and physical warfare (mostly physical – but spiritual as well)! I have lost blood in this war. I have lost peace of mind. I have been ambushed and strafed (well … one tip … of one finger … occasionally). And why is it usually the very tip of the finger? Why is it the one bit of your body gorged with nerves? Why that bit? Why not a fingernail? That would be innocent. That would be innocuous. The would be blameless.

But no. That paper – fragranced with the devil – is hateful and vindictive … hiding in the ordinary … waiting silently for the right moment. And then WHAM!

They say that art reflects life and all that jazz.

Well I got to pondering the meaning of papercuts after suffering “emotional papercuts” (too often!!). And the more I sit and think … the more they are identical!

You know when you are going about your business, a godly air of contentment with the universe, a quiet bonhomie with the world and all who reside within – that kind of “okay” day? And then someone says a word, or gives a look, or that “breathing thing” (or – stay with me on this – purposely holds back a word, or purposely doesn’t look, or purposely doesn’t do that “breathing thing”). That ambush when someone goes all Scissor Hands – and takes a slice out of you for no good reason at all – that little stinger when you least expect it – definitely don’t deserve it – and certainly take nothing from it. And just why have we named it a curiosity – just why do we refer to it as a “communication issue”?

Makes it sound innocuous: “communication issue”.

Well, I think it is just another conspiracy theory!

Because when someone does an emotional papercut – they know exactly what they are doing. They know exactly “that word”, “that tone”, “that look”, “that sigh” (or the absence of all and any combination in just the “exact absent way”) to make “it” happen. It being war – a small war – obviously. Just that right “it” to make war break out for no good reason that I can see. And you may well be right. I might just lob a verbal missile – but only because you did that first purposeful “it” – so mine was just self-defence!

It’s a quiet low-key, no instant casualties or deaths kind of warfare. The one where another (invisible) marker is added to the (invisible) pile of markers. The quiet low-key (invisible) counting. The never spoken but often thought “I care – but how much do you care” kind of counting. The “nothing said counting” – the “it’s alright, I am fine, and it’s not me who’s in a bad mood” kind of counting.

And as I ponder where this may or may not fit in the bible – it strikes me the Lord missed this from His list of “stuff to be avoided”. The closest He got was eyes (not finger tips), splinters (not paper cuts), and huge logs of wood “judgement sin stuff” – but papercuts and emotional papercuts? Maybe it was missed out because you can’t get a “papyrus cut” from papyrus scrolls (I am sure someone will know). Or maybe emotional papercuts are sin-proof – are judgement and sin free.

Because – when all is said and done – I am not “judging” per se … simply “reacting”. In fact, it is probably “score draw” material. Because whenever I react – it is only because I have been bombed first (no matter how much the bomber proclaims their innocence – and they always do)!

But I still ponder (in my godly air of contentment with the universe, a quiet bonhomie with the world and all who reside within) – if there had been nice clean shiny A4 sheets of paper when the dusty peeps put the bible together …

Would “emotional papercuts” still be “a communication issue” today?


22 thoughts on “The meaning of papercuts

  1. *Silently offers you…

    (1) A Mickey Mouse Cartoon Bandaid (small size… perfect for “paper cut” (physical or emotional))
    (2) A Cup of Tea (or coffee… your preference)
    (3) Your favorite bickies…*

    • He got there before you (this is deffo not present tense ponderings) 🙂

      He allowed me to see that there is as much sense is personalising paper as there is in finding “slights” where none exist. And yet ( I hope I am not alone here) I still manage to find them, personalise them, hold onto them. And I am learning more and more the futility of such moments.
      (but I have to say that your First Aid Kit Is wonderful loving – thank you!)

  2. I’m totally with you on this, Paul. I’ve never slandered a piece of paper or consciously made enemies. Some pieces of paper are my best friends: they hold meaningful sentiments and helpful facts…. and then they do this to us! I am convalescing from a “paper cut” at the moment. I regret to say that the only guaranteed answer is the paperless office.

    • Hi Keith – I think these are for you! 🙂

      *Silently offers you…

      (1) A Mickey Mouse Cartoon Bandaid (small size… perfect for “paper cut” (physical or emotional))
      (2) A Cup of Tea (or coffee… your preference)
      (3) Your favorite bickies…*

  3. That was action packed! : )
    I was thinking along these lines of this the other day. I was thinking, who is the best to correct someone in love? A close friend or a family member, it should be a person that truly loves and cares about us. That way we don’t go into fight mode because we know they love us and they are wanting to helps us not judging us.
    I have a good friend. I known her since high school. Once day I said something innocent, but after I said it I freaked out because I thought it could have been taken as an insult. I quickly started apologizing, saying I didn’t mean that like it sounded. She then replied, “Denine, I didn’t take it that way. I know you are not like that.”
    I have had lots of emotional paper cuts because of this I try my hardest not to inflict those on others. But as you well know, : ( (from me to you) sometime we fail – be it intentional or unintentional. However, it is love that can take the sting out. I love you enough to admit I was wrong or mistaken. I love you enough to forgive and move past it. Both people loving. Otherwise you have a paper cut relationship that can’t fully heal.
    Love you Paul!
    Thanks for sticking with me. It has meant a lot to me. Love in action and all that good stuff. Many Blessings!

    • I read that over and just to clarify I am not trying to correct anyone here, I was just saying I have had people slight, judge and belittle me under the guise of, “trying to help you out.” It was not done from of placed of love or concern there is a big difference. : ) me.

    • “Denine, I didn’t take it that way. I know you are not like that.”
      What gorgeous love to have in a friend!

      What came through for me in these words were the “personalising” I do to paper (the paper cuts), how angry I sometimes get, how “OTT” I can be. So He took my “personalising the impersonal” as a mirror to my “personalising the impersonal” when a word or a look becomes the same thing. I can do that quite easily, and I have seen others who are equally skilled. Because this is not the “I didn’t mean it that way” realisation.

      This is the “how dare you” that I put into something as innocent as a new born babe. It is the “me” making it something it never was.

      And I am also becoming (slowly) more skilled at … “Doh! Papercut again – don’t make it personal, Paul. Think impersonal – paper can’t do that (and I might want to get out of the “poor me” mode” I didn’t realise I was in).

      (And I see no similarity between this and the “intentional slight”, the intentional insult, the “snide and clover put down” – those are a completely different topic. Usually that is done for the “clever audience” – whoever the speaker thinks the “audience” is – and that is an attack – that is judgemental and evil. That is destroying an other)

  4. This past weekend I found myself being particularly clumsy… no kidding- I sliced my hand several times cutting veggies, I sliced my foot on the corner of our stone bathtub, cut my toe on the corner of a door… Sometimes I am so focused on where I am trying to go, that I forget to focus on how I am getting there! And the Way is always His Way…

    • WHOA! Julie!! Those aren’t paper cuts!! Those are life shortening oversights!! 🙂

      And I have to say you have gone up even more in my “respect” levels: anyone who can accept that amount of bumping and scraping and turn out such lovely loving music, words and pictures in her own observations of her own normal family living … WOW!! 🙂

      • My husband affectionately calls me “Peach”… because I bruise at the drop of a hat and bump into everything. It amazes me that God can use these very clumsy hands to make any coherent musical or written thought!! Lol!! Speaking of paper cuts… we were going out of town this weekend after church, and my husband wanted to stop at a fast food place- one that I hate. I wanted “my way” and I let him know it…we went there anyway, and as we were getting read to leave, I saw an older couple walk in that I hadn’t seen in several years- a couple I was very close to and who used to go to our church. I walked up behind them in line, and put my arms around them and told them how much I loved them and missed them. It was a beautiful moment- and one I would have missed had I not “obeyed” and gone to my least favorite Fast Food place with my hubby. I told the couple how I didn’t want to go there that day, and that seeing them made it all worth while. I thanked my hubby for bringing me there… a little paper cut for me to admit how wrong I was for my complaining… but a BIG BLESSING He gave me in following through. I am thankful for grace!!

        • Julie – you are very special peach of the Lord! You just keep blossoming with these special moments – over and over!

          Your bring to mind that tree Jesus zapped because He was hungry and it wasn’t fruiting (despite being the wrong season). There isn’t a season or a time or the right moment to be at one with our Father – to feed from and with each other – it is always all the time in each moment.

          You fruit every day! It is truly inspiring. It is “of the moment” – nothing dramatic, nothing “show stopping” – but it is more real more loving more connected than any “three ring circus” testimony! Thank you – you keep offering these gifts in the same way I breathe – your just “do” – amazing!! ((hugs))

          • You are too much, lol! And I love the “feeding from each other” idea… “peach of the Lord”… lol… am I willing to be bruised for Him? or slice and diced by life? Lots to ponder… deep thoughts keep running deeper 🙂

        • Dear Julie – you and Him just blew me away in a very special way. I hope you don’t mind me sharing the moment in a loving bunch of words ((hugs))

  5. Pingback: Meeting Jesus face to face – I just did | Just me being curious

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