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27 June 2014
GOD-TRACKING IS HANDLING CONFLICT IN OBJECTIVE LOVE
I was sitting out in my garden eating lunch the other day, thinking about a friend who was dealing with a minor conflict with someone else. All of a sudden I saw both people as two petunia flowers (perhaps it had something to do with me being in my garden). I love a petunia patch on a hot summer’s day. All the flowers seem to rise to the occasion, gazing intently at the sun while emitting a gentle summer fragrance. In my mind’s eye I saw a white petunia and a blue petunia; two different plants with different appearance yet within the same species. Then I thought about how weeds can grow up in a garden bed, sometimes from within the roots of other plants. In my picture I saw a weed germinate between these two plants. All too soon it had grown faster and bigger than both these gentle petunias and was sapping the very life out of them. One petunia turned to the other and said, “The weed is in your roots, dig it out!” while the other said, “It has nothing to do with me. It’s coming from you. You dig it out!” And so the blame game commenced resulting in an ugly conflict between these two lovely flowers, while the weed simply continued to flourish.
Conflict can be massively destructive to any relationship. Often times it arises from mere perception and not actual fact. Conflict is like a weed that sprouts up between two people and begins to sap them of the joy of living. Usually one person will blame the other for an indiscretion when in fact it’s not their fault. As a result a slinging match ensues with both blaming the other while the discrepancy itself may well be nothing more than a false impression or a flippant word spoken unintentionally. As with our two petunias above, each person could be of the same ilk yet simply differ in opinion, attitude or appearance. The true opponent is the weed! The weed is the subject of disagreement not the petunias. It is important, therefore, that the weed be rooted out as a separate entity without damaging one or both petunias. This can be a painstaking process that requires love and patience. If you find yourself in a conflict at the moment then allow love to motivate the weeding process (and in Christ you can love the other person). Either seek someone to gently mediate between the two of you or come to an agreement with the other person to objectively deal with the problem.
Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” Trouble often takes on the form of conflict but take heart, Jesus’ love overcomes conflict. Even if you have been hard done by, allow room for God to vindicate and try to see your opponent through Christ’s eyes. The truth will out, always. Seek God’s help to love your bother/sister in Christ and always be sure to separate the weeds from the petunias.
God-tracking is handling conflict in objective love.
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God-tracking Through the Year
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Verse of the Week
So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.
Quote of the Week
Sample of Dudley’s Fave Quotes
“Patience is the ability to idle your motor when you feel like stripping gears.” --- Barbara Johnson
Don’t Give Up, Look Up!
Look up and Fix Your Eyes on Jesus!
Help us to separate the problem from the people and patiently weed it out
”My Lord, please help me in this conflict I face today. I pray that you will manifest your Holy Spirit empowered patience in me and help me to love the other person in your love. Help us both to identify the problem – that weed – and not blame each other for the discord. Help us to separate the problem from the people and patiently weed it out, or lead us to someone who could mediate for us. I commit this trouble to you and seek your deliverance from it, in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
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