Hurt feelings. Friendship frayed. Anger. Whispers. Avoidance. Refusals. Doubt. Distrust. Skepticism. Blame. Hate.
A spiraling down. A pushing apart.
Distance. Sadness. Fear.
Wondering why they have left me. Why they have done wrong, don’t understand, left the path.
Why we have diverged – no – why they have diverged.
Or so I have heard….
A recent conversation highlighted how conflict can easily get out of hand. One moment – one action, or comment, or lack there-of – and two walking on the same path are heading in different directions.
As they proceed, the differences grow, and most importantly – the misunderstandings blossom.
Two people, looking at things a bit differently, soon every word and action are taken as a purposeful attack.
And this between “Christians”…
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift. (Ephesians 4:1-7, ESV)
Divisions are natural, even a requirement within human relationships. Yet we do not need to stop moving ahead in the “bond of peace”? Even if a friendship may be over or plans drastically changed, do we need to stop “bearing with one another in love”?
It is truly amazing how when two people (or groups) can come together – being open and honest, humble and patient, respectful and loving – and allow the Spirit to work, that peace and understanding can prevail.
Gracious Lord, help us uncover the misunderstandings that cause conflict in our lives, and rip Your creation apart. Give us strength to find a way to give love and be loved, especially in the midst of disagreement. Amen.
A few related articles…
- Daily Word: Walking Worthy? (theladiesfeed.wordpress.com)
- Maintaining the Unity of the Spirit Requires Dealing With Abusers (cryingoutforjustice.wordpress.com)
- “As a prisoner … (eph42.wordpress.com)
- Define Misunderstanding, Please. (nitetimecoffee.com)
- Roots of Insecurity, Low Self Esteem, Sinful Jealousy and Desire to Control (peacefulwife.com)
- Ephesians 4:29 – 32 (amandacregier.wordpress.com)