Scripture: Proverbs 15:
1 A gentle answer turns away wrath,
but a harsh word stirs up anger.
Observation: Kindness, love and understanding are powerful defenses against conflict.
Application: A few days ago we talked about avoiding arguments, and today’s journal is similar, but I think there is more wisdom here for us to consider. Sometimes just walking away doesn’t make things better, right? Sometimes a silent refusal to engage in an argument brings on even more anger from the other person. So what can we do? We’re trying to avoid conflict by getting away from the person, or refusing to fight, but the fight keeps coming after us.
I think that this has to do a lot with body language and facial expressions. Sometimes we don’t realize just how much we are communicating without words in every day life. And I think that often the thoughts we may be having which we consider private, are displayed for the world unbeknownst to us in our demeanor and body language.
It comes down to this. Silence or denial may not solve a problem, but gentleness and kindness that are sincere can take the intensity of a problem down several notches in a hurry.
I believe that most of us really would rather get along with each other than to fuss and fight anyway. We just want to be understood, appreciated, recognized and respected. If we don’t feel we are getting what we need of those things, we tend to get loud and aggressive, and say things that we later may regret. The next time you find yourself at the doorstep of, or even already in an argument take a few deep breaths, think of some kind gentle words, and rather than barking back, try the higher path and show some kindness and understanding.
Prayer: Gracious Father,
I thank you for your grace. Please help me to grow in gentleness and understanding when it comes to dealing with the conflicts I have in my life. Help me to turn away the wrath of others with a spirit infused with Your love and wisdom. Forgive me when I fall short, and relate to people in a harsh way, and put my feet back on Your paths of peace and righteousness.
Yield: I surrender my desires to match an angry persons tones or body language, and adopt a more kind, gentle persona with the help of The Almighty.