She’s going to talk to us about – Handing Conflict with Women. Anyone need help with that?
A dear friend of mine is very sick right now.
As I type this, she is lying in a hospital bed unsure of what’s wrong and what comes next. The beauty behind this scene is those in the room with her – friends from church who have surrounded her to help care for her and her kids while her husband is serving … overseas.
These women are being the hands and feet of Jesus to this family…
… and many of them have only met her recently.
It’s an amazing thing to see sisters in Christ rally around one of the family and care so genuinely, so deeply. It’s heartwarming to be in community with women like this.
There will eventually come a time when we find ourselves disagreeing with the women in our lives – even women as wonderful as those I mentioned above.
So, what do we do when we find ourselves in conflict with our sisters in Christ?
In her book, Why Can’t We Just Get Along?, author Shelly Hendrix takes a hard look at the relationships between women… and gives great ideas on how to deal with difficult situations.
Here are two that we commonly face:
1) When someone is trying to “put you in your place”
To handle this type of dynamic, Hendrix points us to 1 Corinthians 10:23. We can do NOTHING to earn God’s favor. It is only through the sacrifice of Jesus and the grace of God that we can be saved.
Once we are saved, we can do ANYTHING and still remain right with God, through Christ.
Hendrix explains “God’s love for me remains exactly the same because His love for me isn’t based on my performance but on His identity. But although I can do anything, not all things are the best thing for me or for those whom God loves.”
Therefore, because our identity is found in Christ, it’s Him and Him alone that we need to please. Amen?
When other women try to put us in our place, we must run their words through the filter of God’s truth to determine if what any of what they say is true.
If so, we may need to consider making some changes.
If not, we can stand firm in our identity with Christ – even if they don’t agree.
2) When you don’t see eye to eye with someone
Hendrix shares in chapter six that we must “accept and appreciate the differences [we] see in others.” She takes a look at Philippians 4:2-3 where Paul pleads with two women in the Philippian church to choose to get along.
And that’s the crux of this issue – it’s our choice how we respond to others.
No matter what the other woman’s attitude might be.
No matter if they’ve hurt us, offended us or made us cry.
We can still choose how we will treat them in return.
Hendrix encourages us to become cheerleaders. She describes three types of women:
She explains that we may be one of these types (or a combination), but we can choose – at any time – to become a cheerleader and encourage others.
These are just a couple of ideas to help us deal with difficult situations that we will face in our friendships and dealings with other women. The most important thing that we can do is be sure that our identity is rooted in who we are in Christ.
If we find our confidence in Him, we can face down our critics, cynics and competitors with grace.
REALITY CHECK: Who are you facing down today? Ask God to help you be confident in Him… alone.
©2013 Carey Scott
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