I did not just “fall off the turnip truck”, and I have “been around the block a few times”, meaning that I’m not naive, inexperienced, or immature.
I know that from time to time I will be in a disagreement with others. I am aware that conflicts happen within families, churches, neighborhoods, and groups. I find myself currently involved in yet another conflict that the outcome will affect others. This time the differences in opinions have left me shocked, angry and hurt.
It has been a week since the disagreement and I am still devoting too much of my time and energy dwelling on it. Dwelling on the disagreement, not the solution. My family knows about this situation that I’m having a difficult time with. My kids are watching me and my reactions. I realize that lately I have not been “practicing what I preach” or “walking the walk”. I’m showing my kids what not to do instead of showing the right thing to do.
As of this very moment I am prayerfully changing my attitude. The Holy Spirit is reminding me of the Scriptures I should be applying. First there is this one,
Matthew 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
I desire to be a blessed child of God. I will allow peace to take over my attitude so that the hurt and anger will no longer have a place.
Next, the Word reminds me of more principles to apply,
1 Corinthians 13:5 It [love] does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Ouch! I’m guilty of not acting in love. I have dishonored those I’ve disagreed with. I’ve thought badly of them. I’ve spoken some of those dishonorable thoughts out loud. I have been rather self-seeking, self righteous, and closed minded. I was easily, very easily, angered. I know why, too. It’s because of the records of wrongs I keep against them. It’s true, I keep a mental list of everything, both little and big, that has ever offended me. This list is not helping with finding solutions. It is keeping my focus off of the matters at hand ,therefore keeping us from resolving the issue. I’m laying my list down and will try not to pick it up again.
Proverbs 19:11 A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense.
I’ll be getting over my hurt ego now and letting go of the anger. I’ll be moving forward toward a resolution with both wisdom and patience. This new and improved attitude is not just for my own benefit, but for the group of people this disagreement affects. I also want my kids to see me doing what is right, setting a good example for them to follow. They will always be involved in conflicts, too. It’s just part of life.
God isn’t done with us any of us yet. He guides and equips us through conflict. He forgives us. He encourages us with hope. He reminds us of who we are and sometimes rewinds us to start over with the right attitudes.