Conflict Resolution

Conflicts are common to all mankind. But just as God was the hope of the Nation of Israel, He will also be our Savior in times of trouble. “O thou hope of Israel, the Savior thereof in the time of trouble” Jeremiah 14:8

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CONFLICTS ARE COMMON – Conflicts have been around since the beginning of time when Cain became jealous of Abel and killed him in an outburst of anger (Genesis 4:3-12). Centuries later, when the United States was divided by a Civil War, President Lincoln wisely referred to the biblical admonition that “A house divided against itself cannot stand” (Matthew 12:25). In Amos 3:3 God posed the question, “How can two walk together, unless they are in agreement?” They can’t and we can’t. We must be in one accord in order to effectively work together. United we stand!

WE’RE ON THE SAME SIDE – Everyone in the world is part of the human race; we are all part of the same great big family. Every single person is derived from Adam and Eve, the progenitors of the human race. Even though we have different nationalities, races or subcultures, we are all in this together. Therefore, it is important to remember that you and those with whom you are associated are on the same side. This is true regardless of what you act like, look like or feel like, even though you may have opposing views or even become argumentative. At the end of the day, you are all on the same team and each of you wants to survive, thrive and do the job you’re assigned. When our son played baseball, I helped coach his little league team. Before each game they would all gather in a circle and place their hands together one on top of the other as a show of unity. Then the coach would ask, “What are we?” They would answer, “We are a team!” He would respond, “What is a team?” And they would all shout, “A team is everyone working together as one.” That is teamwork!

TEAMWORK – To experience true teamwork as Ephesians 4:3 instructs us, you should endeavor to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. You must find a way to function in unity and harmony with one another. How? The fruit of the Holy Spirit is peace (Galatians 5:22). As you allow God’s Spirit to control you, He will create an atmosphere of peace in all that you say and do. God is not the author of confusion or conflict; He is the author of peace because Jesus Christ is the Prince of Peace. As Christ works through you, He will be the peacemaker, bringing order and effective results in every situation.

LOVE COVERS IT ALL – Another important thing to keep in mind in resolving differences is love—God’s love, which according to 1 Peter 4:8 covers a multitude of sins (faults and failures). And Proverbs 10:12 says, “Hatred stirs up conflicts, but love covers all offenses.” God’s love is very forgiving and accepting. The following Scripture passage gives a very helpful description of God’s Love. “Love is slow to lose patience—it looks for a way of being constructive. It is not possessive: it is neither anxious to impress nor does it cherish inflated ideas of its own importance. Love has good manners and does not pursue selfish advantage. It is not touchy. It does not keep account of evil or gloat over the wickedness of other people. On the contrary, it is glad with all good men when truth prevails. Love knows no limit to its endurance, no end to its trust, no fading of its hope; it can outlast anything. It is, in fact, the one thing that still stands when all else has fallen.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-8 PHILLIPS)

THE GOLDEN RULE SAYS IT ALL – Jesus gave us a very simple practical rule by which to live known as THE GOLDEN RULE. He said, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” (Matthew 7:12) And in the same context Jesus said that you should “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12:31) Love, God’s love, is the missing building block in most relationships. And if love is not present, then you will act like wild animals, hurting and harming each other, until you will completely destroy one another. “So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. . . And the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, and peace. . . ” (Galatians 5:14-16, 22). Only God’s Spirit can produce the kind of unconditional love that is needed for strong enduring relationships. Only God’s love can enable you to forgive and forget. Therefore, let God’s love and peace operate through you. Then you will achieve the desired objective of harmonious relationships, while enjoying inner peace and a sense of accomplishment. God bless you in all that you say and do!

Dr. Lewis Gregory, Source Ministries © 2017

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