Tuesday, May 5, 2015

How to handle conflict

Ahhhhhh, do people ever frustrate you? Well, I'm having a time of it right now with people difficulty. This one is a family problem over the estate of our recently deceased brother. The challenge is in getting everyone to work together and agree!

So, my question isn't how do I feel? It isn't how I can get this problem resolved? It isn't anything about me - I don't need to ask those questions. I already know how I feel . . . grumpy! I already know what I can do to resolve the problem - I've already tried, that answer is nothing! I can't change people, I can't force them to agree, I can't force my opinion upon them. I can, however, start war and that is exactly what I need to avoid! I know from past experiences that responding according to my feelings when I am upset, saying what I think and what I feel and giving my frustrations room to act out is a good way, no, really, a great way to make war and make things even more difficult. When I behave that way, I do and say things I regret later.

So, my question is . . . what is the wise way to handle this situation? What can I do to make things better? How do I handle my own frustrations, irritations and impatience? Ohhhhhhhhh, can you tell - it's all on my nerves.

Well . . . what does God say to do in this situation? That's what I need to know and whatever He says to do . . . if I'm smart, that's what I will do.

So, let's find out the answer for my problem today.

Pray - well, of course, let God into this situation. I have certainly tried unsuccessfully to deal with this on my own. Why do I wait until I am frustrated to pray? God says in Philippians 4:6 "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything, in everything, by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God." Well, it's pretty clear, that this scripture is speaking right to me! Be anxious for nothing. I certainly AM anxious! But, how do I NOT be anxious? Bring my issues, my problems, the things that are making me anxious to God and make them known to God. Talk to God about what's going on with thanksgiving. Thanksgiving? I understand the anxious part and the part about bringing my issues to God, but, why thanksgiving? I think Psalm 75:1 answers that question, "We give thanks to You, O God, we give thanks! For Your wondrous works declare that Your name is near." That makes sense to me because I can look around and see the sun shining, the beautiful blue sky, the grass turning green, the crabapple trees blooming beautiful white blossoms. The new growth coming out of the ground on my hydrangea bushes and the other perennials coming to life after the winter is now gone. Just those "simple" things are actually wondrous works of God and as I see those things in nature that God established to be that way, they declare to me that God's name is near (allied - joined in relationship and agreed to work together, at hand, more ready).

What does that mean? Well, I know from previous studies that the "Names" of God represents all that God is. They explain the character of God. God has many names and each one of His Names tells me about a part of God's person. So, like my "names" . . . I am a wife, a mother, a Grandmother - Yeay!, a daughter, a homemaker, a business woman, a female. All these "names" tell something about who I am and what I do. Well, the names of God do that same kind of thing, except His names represent far more than the names or "titles" that I have. For instance, one of the names of God is, Jehovah Rapha - the Lord that Healeth me. Another name is Jehovah Jireh - the Lord that sees and provides. Another name is Jehovah Shalom - the Lord of Peace.

So, as I see the wondrous works of God, they are declaring (proclaiming and announcing emphatically) that my God, who sees and provides, my God of Peace is near to me! In other words, by bringing my requests to God, I can leave my anxiety at the door and with thanksgiving, tell Him about my issues and know (confidence, faith) that He will provide help and peace to me in my situation. My God is my ready help in time of need (Hebrews 4:16). My God is mighty (Job 9:4). Nothing is too difficult for Him (Jeremiah 32:17). My God is on my side (Psalm 56:9). My God is well able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that I can ask or think (Ephesians 3;20). Those alone are enough reasons why I would bring my requests to God with thanksgiving! I am so thankful that I am not talking to the wind! I am talking to the One who will hear and answer! He is the one who is actually able to help! No more anxiety - I have rolled my cares over on to Him, because He cares for me (I Peter 5:7)! Now, I shall stand and watch and see the salvation of God (Psalm 25:5, Psalms 62:1, Micah 7:7)! Watch and see what God will do! I have suddenly gone from anxious to excited, from irritated to appreciative, from grumpy to thankful. God IS good. Find out what He says about your situation, follow His directions, do what He advises and then believe and watch and see what the Lord will do!

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