|Nice and Easy Does It Sometimes
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
Gentleness is especially appropriate if the person who wronged you is experiencing unusual stress. If so, the wrong done to you may be a symptom of a deeper problem. By responding in a gentle and compassionate manner, you may minister powerfully to the other person.
Taken from The Peacemaker: A Biblical Guide to Resolving Personal Conflict
by Ken Sande, Updated Edition (Grand Rapids, Baker Books, 2003) p. 86
Food for Thought
A gentle answer turns away wrath and could possibly open up the door to peacemaking.
Directly confronting an unusually stressed-out person rarely proves effective. The defenses go up and the door of conversation usually gets slammed shut. Consider how this happens in your own life. When you’re unusually stressed, are you just wishing someone would come up and directly confront you? Even if you’re the one in the wrong? Probably not.
But is an unusually stressed-out person grateful when someone treats them with gentleness? Even if they’re in the wrong? Almost always. The defenses are lowered and you just might be invited in; in where the deeper issue resides that may not have anything to do with you. So think about who you might be particularly gentle with this week, and pray that instead of stirring up anger, you might minister powerfully to that person.
Resources To Help You Respond to Conflict Biblically
NOW AVAILABLE! The Peacemaking Church resource set is our new resource designed specifically for the church. It is a three-part discipleship initiative designed to change the way you think about conlflict and help your church on its journey toward a Culture of Peace. Included is a box for the pastor to inspire the church, a box for the small group leader to enable your entire church to learn together the basic principles of personal peacemaking, and a box to embed a peacemaking team into the life of the church. You can order it through our online bookstore or by calling our Resource line at 800-711-7118.
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