Identity Crisis: Conflict
If you are a human, you have probably experienced conflict.
Before we look at what to do during conflict, I just want to say that in your life, conflicts will happen. You will have disagreements with others. You will get in fights with others. You can’t always control whether you will have conflict or not. Conflicts happen.
You can’t avoid all conflict, but you can control what you do.
What do you do during conflict? In the book of Proverbs we find wisdom about what your words can do during these conflicts. Proverbs 12:18 (NIV) says,
“The words of the reckless pierce like swords,
but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
Have you ever heard the phrase “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me”? You probably know, this is wrong. Words can hurt. They can cut deep like a sword. Words can be used to tear down. To destroy.
There is another side to this. It says your words can bring healing. They can build us up and help us to bring eternal life to others. Your words can bring grace and forgiveness to others.
Your words can bring life and healing or destruction and hurt.
Proverbs 15:1 (NIV) also says,
“A gentle answer turns away wrath,
but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
Again, Proverbs tells us that your words are two sides of the same coin. It says a gentle answer can turn away wrath. A kind word can avoid fights and calm people down. Have you ever experienced this? Someone is mad, but a gentle word can calm them down.
On the other side of the same coin, a harsh word can stir up anger. It can make the argument flair up and get worse. An angry word can quickly turn into an argument and shouting match.
Are you the one that uses your words to stir up arguments? Do you use your words to make others angry or do your words calm people down? Do your words make people peaceful?
In life, your words have the power for EVIL. They have the power to hurt, to start arguments, and to destroy. Your words also have the power to LIVE. They have the power to heal, to uplift, and to bring life.
What are you using your words for? How do your words effect those around you? You are called by God to bring the best words you can ever bring to someone. You are called to be ambassadors of life and peace to others. You are called to bring healing and restoration to others. You are called to bring God’s words to a hurting and lost world. So in your life, how are you using your words? Are you lifting others up or tearing them down. Words can hurt, but they can also bring life. I would challenge you this week to think of all the words that you say to others, whether joking or not, and ask yourself “is this speaking evil or life into the person?”
What do you think? How can we speak Life into others?
Comment Below your thoughts or questions.
Pastor Levi's thoughts on Christianity and Christians. I will try to update this every Monday.