Approaching a difference of opinions the right way can actually have a positive impact, on ourselves as well as those around us.
How much better would our lives be if we could disagree with one another and still have peace?
The Bible speaks about how we, as Christians, ought to deal with disagreement and conflict.
- Ephesians 4:31-32 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.
- Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
- Matthew 18:15 “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.
- Ephesians 4:26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger.
- Matthew 5:9 “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
The following affirmations (when spoken out loud, along with the above scriptural meditations) can help you to handle disagreements and conflicts in the right way... making you a peacemaker and opening yourself up to being blessed! (Don't forget to work on the self-reflecting questions today.)
- I approach disagreements with an open mind and with the Word of God on my heart.
- I am a realist. I accept the fact that disagreements are a part of life, regardless of how sunny and bright I try to make life for myself and everyone around me. Each one of us is unique, and that, in itself, is enough to make differences of opinion inherent in daily life, but I embrace others' differences.
- I am proud of my ability to achieve a successful outcome from any conversation, as I listen to the still small voice of the Spirit inside me. I approach discourse with an open mind and heart.
- I realize that the more ammunition I enter the battlefield with is the more resistance I can expect from others.
- My approach at the onset is to recognize the differing viewpoints, and have a heart of compassion, empathy and Christ's love. I respect the uniqueness of others and refrain from taking a stance of superiority. This approach makes me a successful negotiator.
- Others let their guards down when they realize I approach them without hostility or aggression. So even if they are upset, they are more willing to participate civilly when they sense my open mind.
- Today, my aim is to leave any disagreements with inner peace and satisfaction and to operate as God desires me to.
1. Is it always easy for me to overlook the ignorance of others?
2. How do I react when an emotional curveball is thrown my way?
3. How do I respond when the other party refuses to meet me halfway?
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