Tag Archives: conflict resolution

Funny Friday: I’m starting to think my husband isn’t going to apologize…

I'm starting to think my husband isn't going to apologize for the way he acted in my dream last night.

Funny Friday: I’m starting to think my husband isn’t going to apologize…

“I’m starting to think my husband isn’t going to apologize for the way he acted in my dream last night.”  Does this happen to anyone else?  He just doesn’t seem to understand why I’m so mad at him!

“I have had a dream that troubles me and I want to know what it means.” Daniel 2:3 (NLT)

 

Why Christians Get Offended When Jesus Gets Attacked

This past week, I tried to convey to one of my classes why Christians get offended sometimes, at least from my perspective. I wanted to share a little insight about why this might get so heated from a Christian perspective...

Why Christians Get Offended When Jesus Gets Attacked

Recently in my college classes we discussed diversity issues and how they can affect us in college and in life. One of the exercises we do in class is called “Examining Your Own Prejudices”. It involves each student taking an index card and anonymously writing a couple of sentences about a group of people that they have the most difficulty with. I then read each of the cards aloud, and we have a class discussion about them. We talk about where these prejudices come from, how to prevent stereotyping an entire group based on them, how to work with groups with which we have difficulties, and so on.

It’s usually a pretty controversial, yet enlightening exercise. It never fails…in each class I’ve taught there is usually a card mentioning a problem that someone has with Atheists (or non-Christians). There’s also a card or two listing Christians as the problem group. These two types of cards have a tendency to bring on the most discussion, sometimes heated. It’s often because Christians get offended and hurt by some of what’s said.

This past week, I tried to convey to one of my classes why Christians get offended sometimes, at least from my perspective. I wanted to share a little insight about why this might get so heated from a Christian perspective, and why we get so hurt when people speak badly of Jesus. I shared with them a note I had typed into my phone a while back.

Imagine a friend showing up at the worst time of your life

Imagine that you go through the hardest time of your life. You end up meeting this friend, Continue reading

When You Are Wronged, Stay On God’s Side

When You Are Wronged, Stay On God’s Side.  Here are a few steps to do so...

When You Are Wronged, Stay On God’s Side

With the recent events (fatal police shootings, protests and riots) going on in our nation, and even in my hometown of Tulsa, I’ve been pretty disheartened lately. I hurt for the mistreatment of human beings. It’s upsetting to see the blatant disrespect for authority. My heart breaks for those who have lost loved ones. I hurt for those who are making poor choices that will forever change their lives and the lives of their families. It’s discouraging to see those who are blinded by the devil’s lies.

I have felt my heart breaking for all sides. My spirit is heavy that there are even “sides” to begin with. Then, which “side” is right? Maybe both? Maybe neither? I’ve come to the conclusion that there is only ONE right side: God’s side. If we side with God, we will never go wrong.

I was very torn about whether or not I should even write about these current events for fear someone would believe that I’m taking sides. Quite frankly I don’t want to even begin to speculate who was right or who was wrong. From where I stand, I can probably find rights and wrongs on both sides. Nevertheless, I wasn’t there. I wasn’t personally involved. I don’t have all the facts. However, God WAS there. God DOES have all of the facts. We will never go wrong when we look to and lean on Him for guidance and answers. I know it sounds all flowery and pretty and is much easier said than done. Regardless of how difficult though, it’s the right thing to do. So I guess I AM taking a side. I’m taking God’s side.

Personal reflection

As I spent time reading my bible and listening to podcasts over the past week, parts of the story of David kept coming up here and there. I know enough by now to pay attention to repeated themes because more often than not, it’s God speaking to me or trying to get a message across to me. I prayed and asked God if He was trying to tell me something. Nothing came to mind at that moment. So I wrote a note in my journal: “David—repeated theme”.

I continued to spend a lot of time in prayer for and about the recent shootings, protests and riots. I’ve prayed for our leaders, for godly justice to be done, for the families, for wrong mindsets, and for the overall situation in general. Additionally, I even asked God, “How do we fix this? Where do we even start?” Then, I heard in my heart, “Look at David.” My next thought was “Ooooh…THAT’S why David keeps coming up!” After that I thought, “Wait a minute. David? What does David have to do with anything that’s going on in our country right now?”  The answer… Continue reading

Prayer for When You’re Verbally Attacked

Prayer for When You’re Verbally Attacked

Prayer for When You’re Verbally Attacked

Do you ever just feel attacked?  Sometimes it can seem relentless!  I think it’s high time that we just get fed up with being attacked and start doing something about it!  Recently I wrote a post for scriptures to help when you feel attacked or persecuted.  These scriptures are helpful and comforting to let us know that we’re not alone, that God is our avenger, and that we will be blessed and graced when enduring persecution.  Today I’d like to go on the offensive a little more.  I’d like to give you a prayer that you can pray when you feel like you’re being verbally attacked by people. 

 

I do believe there is a time and a place to endure attacks, but I also firmly believe that God never intended for us to be doormats to be walked on by people.  When we’re being verbally attacked, there ARE times when it’s okay to fight back…just not always in the way your natural instincts might want to! 😉  It’s okay to go to war.  We don’t have to hide until Jesus comes.  We don’t have to be wimpy, spineless, victimized Christians!  We don’t always need to head for cover when we’re verbally attacked by people.

We need to be fighters!

We need to be warriors!

We need to be strong and put on the full armor of God to stand up to the devil and his schemes and strategies!

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” Ephesians 6:10-18 (NIV)

During a bible study in college, Continue reading

Scriptures to help when you feel attacked or persecuted …

Scriptures to help when you feel attacked or persecuted …

Scriptures to help when you feel attacked or persecuted…

Last week I shared how to respond when people offend you.  I discussed recent incidents of feeling a tad bit persecuted, and how I’ve decided to react when it happens.  On many occasions I’ve had to fight the urge to fight back!  Even though we know the right way to respond (or NOT respond), it’s still hard sometimes to deal with the attacks.  In light of that, this week I’ve put together a list of scriptures that can be helpful and encouraging when you feel you are being attacked or persecuted.  It’s helpful to know that we’re not alone and that God has given us some encouragement and direction on this topic.

Persecution is a term we can relate to being treated differently in a negative context.  To persecute is to pursue with harassing or oppressive treatment; to harass persistently; or to annoy or trouble persistently.  The Bible is chock-full of stories where Christians were persecuted.  In the Old Testament, Noah was criticized and thought of as crazy for building an ark, the Hebrews were oppressed and made as slaves in Egypt before their exodus with Moses, Joseph was harassed by his brothers, and there are countless other stories in the Old Testament.  Throughout much of the New Testament, Christians everywhere were persecuted, even (and especially) Jesus Christ, Himself.

Present-day Christians encounter persecution of all kinds…even death.  It’s both humbling and easier to bear being picked on, attacked, insulted, and persecuted when we know that across the world there are others suffering much, much worse.   

Why do you think Christians are persecuted—what’s the cause?

It’s often hard not to ask the question “why me?” when we are being treated differently, being persecuted or just being left out, but the bible reminds us in 1 Corinthians 10:13 that trials (persecution included) are common to man—meaning that they happen to us all.  1 Peter 4:12-29 also tells us not to be surprised when trials come against us as if it’s strange, like it shouldn’t be happening.  There are times when we will share in some of Christ’s sufferings.  However, Romans 8:18 reminds us that even though we might experience suffering in the present, it will not even compare to the glory that will be revealed to us later.  If we are ever persecuted for being a Christian or living right, God will make it right someday—He’s got our backs.  God is our avenger.  We just have to remember that things aren’t always peachy just because we are Christians.

Like I briefly mentioned in the last post, we might even consider it a compliment that the devil thinks of us as enough of a threat that he has to mess with us!  That must mean we’re doing something right!  The devil comes against us (or uses other people or circumstances to come against us) because we look like God (Genesis 5:1 says man is made in God’s own image).  The devil can’t get to God so he comes after us.  A good thing to remember is this—that if you’re not pleasing God, you’re pleasing the devil; and if you’re pleasing the devil, you’re not pleasing God.  We should seek to please God by being the people He calls us to be—by being different from the world.  It is better to be a God-pleaser than a people-pleaser, world-pleaser or devil-pleaser!!  A very sweet reader sent me an encouraging e-mail last week saying, “Praise God for people like you who stand up to Satan’s “temper tantrum”.”  I loved that!  I hope these verses will be an encouragement to you too to stand up to Satan’s temper tantrums!

Scriptures to help when you feel attacked or persecuted…

Continue reading

How to Respond When People Offend You

How to Respond When People Offend You...

How to Respond When People Offend You

What do you do when people offend you, insult you, treat you badly, or persecute you?  I’ve been having to really work on this lately.  Back in December I mentioned that I was getting an increasing number of negative comments on my blog posts.  Some were from well-meaning Christians who felt the need to correct me.  Others were from people of a differing religious belief system who wanted to argue and debate over doctrinal issues.  Some were from people, Christian or not, that just intensely disagreed with things that I said (and not always in the nicest way).  Lately I’ve been getting a bit lambasted on Pinterest with comments from atheists, specifically about a post on “How to Pray for Unsaved Loved Ones”.  I guess you could call it a persecution of sorts.

Apparently some of them are taking offense that I, as well as others who are pinning these prayers, might be praying for them, and they want me to stop.  Well guess what?  Not gonna happen.  And now, since they were so kind as to leave me a comment and give me their name, I can pray for them more specifically.  By name.  Which, by the way, I wasn’t doing before because I didn’t even know them. 🙂  They can’t really stop me from praying can they?  I know…I’m such a rebel.  The problem that I’ve been struggling with though when I get offended  by their comments is wanting to reply to them.

These commenters have written things that are critical and insulting.  They say things and make accusations that aren’t true.  They take things I say and twist or misconstrue them.  They definitely appear to be in “attack” mode.  My first gut reaction is that I’m extremely offended.  I feel very angry because I feel a sense of injustice.  I deeply want to want to argue with their comments.  It takes an awful lot of restraint not to say anything.  Instead of arguing and fighting back, I’ve had to learn to hold my tongue and fight back with prayer.

I’ve really had to re-read and follow my own advice about adhering to the communication guidelines laid out in the bible and about using my “Miranda Rights” by exercising my right to remain silent (because if not I probably will incriminate myself with an ungodly response to which I WILL be held accountable to God someday!).  I’m having to follow my own tips on not being nasty back to others who have been nasty to me.  To be honest, it’s not always easy. 

My pastor mentioned once that many times we have this wrong attitude: Continue reading