What About Conflict?


A reading for Wednesday, July 8, 2020: Acts 13:4-12.

"When the proconsul saw what had happened, he believed, for he was astonished at the teaching about the Lord."

The early apostles were not afraid of conflict when it came to preaching and teaching the gospel. They were never afraid to tell the truth when they felt it was important. In fact, if we read carefully Paul and Barnabas did not start out looking for a fight as they traveled along evangelizing but were ever confident in what they were doing and so were always willing to engage with their detractors.

We do not handle conflict very well. We seem to err on the extremes. There are those among us who want to fight about everything, and seem to enter into every situation with a chip on their shoulder ready for an argument. Then there are others on the opposite end, who sit by and watch when genuine action is really required. For most of us, it's hard to know what to do.

Maybe this... will my action in this situation advance the gospel, and bring others closer to God? Will this build up or tear down? Or are my actions about my being right and others wrong? What is my agenda and what does the Lord require of me in this moment with these people and in this place?

Truth is, sometimes others will be inspired when they see confidence and a willingness to act in the midst of conflict. Thanks be to God!  


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