A Commitment to Peacemaking and Reconciliation

lightstock_80329_small_jamesWe live in a world filled with conflict. Most of us cannot even make it through a day with having to deal with interpersonal struggles. Conflict can impact our work relationships, family relationships, friendships, and even our church relationships.

It should be our desire is to build a “culture of peace” that reflects God’s peace and the power of the gospel of Christ in our lives. From John 13:34-35; Eph. 4:29-32; Col. 3:12-14, we see many biblical principles that can help us in our relationships. From these passages, we find that as we “stand in the light of the cross, we realize that bitterness, unforgiveness, and broken relationships are not appropriate for the people whom God has reconciled to Himself through the sacrifice of His only Son” (Peacemaker Ministries).

In this message, we will discover ways to deal better with conflict and find peace and reconciliation in our relationships.

Blessings

Follow this link to listen to the message – A Commitment to Peacemaking

 

 

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We Must Reject Using Sinful Forms of Communication

Lou PrioloPastor Lou Priolo provided many of these sinful forms of communication

Interruption

Proverbs 18:13 ESV

If one gives an answer before he hears, it is his folly and shame.

Not Communicating

Ephesians 4:25 ESV

Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.

Name Calling

Proverbs 30:11 ESV

There are those who curse their fathers and do not bless their mothers.

James 4:11 ESV

Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge.

Inattentiveness

Proverbs 18:2 ESV

A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion.

Judging motives

1 Corinthians 4:4–5 ESV

For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby acquitted. It is the Lord who judges me. Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God.

Some judgment is appropriate

Matthew 7:1–7 ESV

“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. “Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you. “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.

1 Corinthians 13:7 ESV

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

James 4:11–12 ESV

Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?

What happens if you suspect that their motives are wrong? What do you do?

•     You cannot judge their motives, but you can ask them to judge their own motives

Not communicating willingly

Proverbs 20:5 ESV

The purpose in a man’s heart is like deep water, but a man of understanding will draw it out.

“Draw it out.”

• Ask the right question

• Respond appropriately

• We do not have the right not to engage our spouse in communication

Talk about

• problems in the relationship

• your spouse’s personal issues

• struggles with the children

• family finances

• friends

• in-law

An unwillingness to discuss these things with your spouse is usually sin

Ephesians 4:25 ESV

Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.

Sweeping generalization

• “You never listen to me.”

• “You are always dissatisfied with everything I do.”

• “The only time you are nice to me is when you want something from me.”

• “You are the worst ___________ I have ever known.”

These statements are harsh, unloving but also dishonest

A better way to approach your spouse with a concern would be…

• Honey, I think you tend to _________

• Honey, I think you have a pattern to __________

• Honey, I think you have a habit of ___________

When you use inaccurate language, you hinder open communication with your spouse

Blame-shifting

Pride blinds us to our sin, but it also looks for someone else to blame. We ought to be willing to assume 100% responsibility for our sin.

Humility tends to beget humility

Unearthing

Digging up things that are buried from the past is a sign of bitterness.

When your spouse sins against you, you can

• Cover it with love (overlook and forgive the transgression)

• Confront in love

Using put-downs

Proverbs 30:11 ESV

There are those who curse their fathers and do not bless their mothers.

James 4:11 ESV

Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge.

Ephesians 4:29 ESV

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

Other types of unbiblical speech:

  • Belittling
  • Biting sarcasm
  • Condescension
  • Contemptuous speech
  • Derogatory
  • Harshness
  • Innuendos
  • Insult
  • Name-calling
  • Unfair comparisons
  • Use of profanity
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What Happens When People Do Not Communicate Effectively?

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• Issues remain unclarified (Proverbs 18:17).

• Wrong ideas are uncovered.

• Conflicts and misunderstandings are unresolved (Matt 5:23-26).

• Confusion and disorder occur (1 Cor.  14:33, 40).

• Wise decision-making is thwarted (Proverbs 18:13).

• The development of deep unity and intimacy is hindered (Amos 3:3).

• Boredom, discontentment, and frustration develop.

• Interpersonal problems pile up, and barriers become higher and wider.

• The temptation to look for someone more exciting occurs.

• We do not really get to know each other.

• We do not receive spiritual help from each other.

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Deepening Family Communications

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Do you ever struggle in communicating well with others and especially in your family? Here is a message on Deepening Family Communications. I hope it will help you. Blessings.

Deepening Family Communications

 

 

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Meditates on the Word Day and Night

Psalm-WS Plumer“Another positive sign of a renewed man is that he meditates in the law of the LORD day and night. ‘As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.’

Vain thoughts lodge in all ungodly men. But the righteous hate sinful imaginings. What the wicked would be ashamed to act or speak out, the righteous is ashamed to think or desire.

Yet the mind of the righteous is full of activity. He meditates. The power of reflection chiefly distinguishes a man from a brute.

The habit of reflection chiefly distinguishes a wise man from a fool. Pious reflection on God’s word greatly distinguishes a saint from a sinner.

Without meditation grace never thrives, prayer is languid, praise dull, and religious duties unprofitable.

Yet to flesh and blood without divine grace this is an impossible duty.

It is easier to take a journey of a thousand miles than to spend an hour in close, devout, profitable thought on divine things.

Like prayer (Luke 18:7), meditation is to be pursued day and night, not reluctantly, but joyously, not merely in God’s house, or on the Lord’s day, but whenever other duties do not forbid.

Nor does the true child of God slight part of divine truth. He loves it all.

A saint is therefore described by his ‘meditating in the law of God day and night,’ which is the natural and necessary effect of his delight in it.”

–by William Plumer

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You Stand in the Righteousness of Christ

Thomas Brooks - Works“Though men may accuse you, judge and condemn you, yet know for your support, that you are acquitted before the throne of God. However you may stand in the eyes of men, as full of nothing but faults, persons made up of nothing but sin, yet are you clear in the eyes of God.

God looks upon weak saints in the Son of His love, and sees them all lovely. They are as the tree of Paradise, ‘fair to his eye, and pleasant to his taste,’ Genesis 3:6.

Ah, poor souls! You are apt to look upon your spots and blots, and to cry out with the leper not only ‘Unclean, unclean!’ but ‘Undone, undone!’

Well, forever remember this, that your persons stand before God in the righteousness of Christ, upon which account you always appear, before the throne of God, without fault. You are all fair, and there is no spot in you.”

– by Thomas Brooks

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