June 10, 2018

Proverbs 15:1

 Relationships are very challenging. Sometimes it may be your marriage, your family members, your friends, neighbors, co-workers, or whomever, even in the best of relationships arguments and disagreements will happen from time to time. With people who have different temperaments, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we should not be taken off guard when problems arise. The Bible says, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1)  What are some of the rules of engagement in relationships?

 1                    Think Before you Speak

Why not stop and ask yourself what is the reason behind the other person’s attitude and frustration? Is the other person under a load of stress, fear, or worry which may have provoked their actions toward you as well as others? Does it bother you that you often feel insecure, misunderstood, and unappreciated at times in your relationships? Could you possibly be misreading or exaggerating the problem? Take some time to carefully identify the situation and what is happening. Allow the Holy Spirit to guide you and calm your feelings before you say things that not only hurt but also may cause severe damage in your relationships with others. Remember a gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

 Are you a person who is quick to say things before you think?

What may be the consequences of harsh and unkind words and actions?

 2                    Be Specific In Communication Of Needs

 Sometimes our needs are greater than at other times. Sometimes we may feel insecure and pressured. One must be specific and let people know when you are having a bad hair day. This usually can be recognized by a person who is irritable, and snaps at those around them. You may say to your family, friends, or associates, I need to you to be aware that I am going through a difficult time and I am barely hanging on to my last nerve so please don’t do anything at this time to cause the volcano of frustration in me to erupt. The more specific we are with needs and communication the better we are able to relate to others. When you can share with others the very things that frustrate you, others can learn to try to not do those things that upset you.

 What are some things that cause you to be irritated by others?

If we love one another we should do our best to not irritate one another.

 3                    Learn To Let Things Go     

 We should not assume that old problems will constantly repeat themselves. Some- times we need to let go of the baggage of the past. It is wrong on our part to demand that a person must constantly prove themselves again and again. Learn to have faith in your relationships. If you are growing in the Lord and effectively communicating with others you should be able to relate to others on a deeper level which can sustain friendships no matter what happens. The Bible says, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-7)

 4                    Seek To Be An Encourager 

 Look for opportunities to bless and encourage others. Try to say something nice every day. When you notice something good about another person, stop and tell them. You will be amazed at how encouraging words can affect people’s lives. I always tell people when they say something positive and encouraging to me that all encouragement helps. Always look for the best in others and seek to encourage others daily, especially those who are close family members or friends.

 Remember, harsh words stir up anger but gentle words warm the heart and turns away problems!