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Janet's Blog

Kindness and Conflict among Christians

In Eph 4:32 the apostle Paul speaks about Christlike behavior among Christians. In previous verses, he addresses behavior that is not Christlike. One of the terms he uses is “unwholesome words” and how many of us have caught Christians out on this including ourselves at some-time. Negativity or negative reports is one of them. Let’s see if we can monitor our words with each-other because “our tongue is an unruly member” according to James, that does not know much restraint. We need to watch our thoughts, to make sure they are healthy too.
 
THOUGHTS = WORDS = ACTIONS
 
Paul says not to be given to anger, bickering and strife but rather
“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in
Christ God forgave you”. The words compassion and tender-hearted are used interchangeably in different translations.
 
This article contains a few corrective words and encouragements.
You know, we hear so many things about what God can do for us in pastors sermons and what we will do for Him in prophetic messages. I would like to address some necessary things in-between if that’s alright with you?
Because the others will not be………without awareness and change in this area
(Ephisians 4 in practice). You will be short on answered prayers and moving in the Spirit in the End-Time Move of God.
 
Better Behavior Among Christians

If you are one of those Christians who leave things undone and someone unsettled, that does not please The Lord – He is not impressed. And you did not get away with it because you are reading this and I am writing for that person you offended
in Jesus’ name.
 
The Lord is coming for those who are prepared. “To those who overcome” scripture says. The stressful situations in the world etc and the sin-nature as well……..anger, envy, unkindness, hostility, dishonesty and poor behavior. Whatever you have to overcome in your personal life. David said “search me oh God” yet so many take His Grace for granted and treat it carelessly – this is evident when we neglect to spend time with Him. It is also evidenced in the way we treat others. It’s a holy bond we have in Christ. We ought to respect that and act accordingly.
 
“Judge yourselves so you won’t be judged”. He judges us on our true performance,
not the one we like to think He does. Let's do the same so we attract less judgement.
 
It will matter more to us on that Day, believe me. Jesus says that “His reward is with Him”. We should not treat that so carelessly. Most of the time we don’t think about it. He goes on to say that “He will render to each one according to what he has done”.
So let’s be true to ourselves and consider Him with our words and our actions.
We dismiss so much of what He has to say often.
 
Our Christ likeness is determined by how we react and respond to someone in a situation. Many of us know how to have a holy conversation – we like to discuss spiritual things with Christian friends. How do we behave when a situation arises
with a Christian friend?
 
Recently I had such a pleasant conversation with a good Christian friend and you could say that much of the content of conversation we had was holy. This sister really loves The Lord and loves to have a good spiritual conversation with a friend. The last conversation, we enjoyed so much over the phone, we thought of visiting each other and staying overnight – we live a considerable distance. This was followed by strange and inconsistent behavior.

Does God Catch You Out?

See if you can learn from this and maybe even comforted when I share about it because I do this purely so we can see ourselves or others in this example – not to air something I am displeased with and offended about.
 
God is interested in our daily behavior more than we think. See in this situation
I will give how God catches us off guard often and also how we do not consider Him
in our interactions with others. At times we need to seek counsel from Him.
 
At the time a situation came up with this friend and myself, she had been giving me some really good encouragements about one of my websites I had put such a lot of work into over the expanse of several months. The site in question – whether I would keep it or not was really nice and allowed Christians to participate and inspire each-other but only a small handful did over more than a year.
 
This sister is generous with expressing her joy about my giftings in website creation etc from The Lord consistently since I’ve known her. That takes a big heart when you’ve been unemployed for some years and would dearly love to have a gift to express yourself in or success with something ventured.

She was not well and had experienced considerably stressful circumstances in recent months. I had it in my heart to really bless this person. I said I would be getting an item she needed and would be sending it to her and she was happy about it and in addition to that – unknown to her – I thought I would surprise her by placing content along the lines of something she likes very much on one of my websites. I had some really good news to share with her as well.
 
However, when I went to phone her, she had a headache…..said she would phone me when she’s ready but I never got a phone call. When this went on for several days –
she had discovered the surprise on my website, she failed to express her thanks whatever. I was mystified by this – and I am big on thanks – I was’nt sure about sending an item to her that week but sent it in good faith.
 
I did send a message asking her why she did not contact me or respond in anyway. That made her indignant – she replied  saying that she was cancelling the friendship and sending the item back. She did so, unopened and unwrapped………phoned me to say it was on the way back…….reprimanded me, saying that “she does not like phone calls at all in the morning, she likes to pray then!” I usually respected this but had made an exception to let her know about an opportunity that had a time limit. She would not
let me get a word in edge-ways to respond to her and she went promptly on her way.
 
The Lord gave me wisdom to make my query with her short when I contacted her but I failed to do that – saying that I’ve had baffling incidents with Christians before and would she please not repeat that. She said she phoned me a few times the day I phoned her and that I would not pick up the phone. Then she repeated words back at me and said “no, it would not be repeated” (what I did).
 
There was so much blessing in store for her I had in mind. Part of her actions made sense and some did not to this day. In different ways, both of us failed to do the right thing. I did’nt listen close enough to The Lord. She did not respond with thanks or express her joy but shared the news with another friend. Then acted with haste
in a moment of anger.

My advice to you in some of that is when you tell someone something they did
or failed to do is “keep it short and sweet” and it’s usually better to “ask first”.
Try to avoid making them too uncomfortable.


NOW I WILL GIVE YOU ENCOURAGEMENTS THE LORD INSPIRED ME TO WRITE FOR YOU
2-3 WEEKS LATER.  I KNEW HE WANTED ME TO HELP MY READERS WITH COMMUNICATIONS
BUT NEEDED TO DISTANCE MYSELF FIRST.

 
Words of Wisdom and Comfort

If we do not forget what we have been through in past relationships,
it can trip us up in present relationships and/or cause discomfort to someone we have to communicate with now. This in turn can cause considerable distress to both parties – you and another person when a situation arises where neither yourself or that other person is at fault. ie you may misinterpret something another person says or does (or does not do) and they will not know how to interpret your reactions.
 
Also, circumstances appear to be a certain way sometimes and you can best interpret them when you have had healing from past experiences. Don’t let them – or give them occasion to – mould your present response and reactions in life. Yes, this actually caused a rift between a very good friend and myself and she must have concluded that she would be more peaceful  without the friendship. Circumstances certainly did appear to be different than they were and I reacted to the evidence of what seemed to be.
 
That is why always, it is good to look at our perception of things – in a given situation – we are not sure of or there is some element of doubt. We need to stand back and take a good look at things. We can best do this when giving ourselves a distance
from a situation at hand.
 
You do this in meditative prayer. That means you take a matter to God and ask for His guidance – objectively instead of subjectively. Sometimes we need to line things up with scripture. That is a good way of handling impressions because as they say__ “impressions can be wrong”…………”things are not always what they seem to be”.
 
You have heard the saying where someone “looks at things through
rose colored glasses?”
We need to be careful that we are not looking through lemon or grapefruit glasses sometimes……thinking that things have gone sour again; they did not work out…….or bitter, where our thoughts become angry or unkind towards someone…….or we are expecting them to be angry or unkind with us because we have experienced that before.
 
Please also consider that when a situation is confusing or baffling to you, our enemy could be at work – influencing your thoughts – and maybe attempting to spoil something good in one or both of your lives. He knows that “united we stand and divided we fall”. You know that we can actually fall away – and cause another person to – a blessing The Lord has install for us and maybe even our friendship. There have been instances in the lives of Christians where our enemy will even incite one against the other (both parties) through confusion and misinterpretation accompanied by unkind words and selfish acts. Please be aware that this sometimes occurs with good quality friendships.
He looks for a weak link in our amour of light. So be vigilent.
 
Some perfectly good Christian marriages have gone by the wayside when the enemy has found a chink in their amour and built inroads into their thinking. Things exist in our thinking first…..we dwell on them…..and it is’nt long before they become words and actions (by-products of our unhealthy thoughts or faulty thinking patterns).
That’s why scripture tells us to “cast aside every thought and imagination that comes against the knowledge of God” or a person you have a good relationship with. In other words “throw off these thoughts…… don’t let them sit there” until they disturb you more. Yes rather, think pleasant thoughts like we are encouraged to in Phil 4 and displace the threatening or unpleasant thoughts with something good. You can do this best by making Phil 4 your pattern for this procedure.
 
This is good warfare (sideways) for those who don’t wish to engage the enemy directly with spiritual weapons because they have been intimidated one too many times. Maybe they have become battle fatigued. In this case, instead of taking up the offensive weapons of war…….pick up the simple sling-shot like David and dismantle the thought patterns you are developing (or have developed) and dwell on
all the pleasant things you can!
 
You can also make a simple act of will by contacting that person and saying (or inviting them to do) something nice. This way we can challenge our thoughts and change them to something constructive. With this practice, we can often surprise ourselves by finding out that what we have/had building up in our minds is simply not true. Simplicity is the best way often with many things in life – don’t allow your thoughts to become complex and complicated. That is what these scriptures are telling us. We would be wise to follow Paul’s counsel. Jesus used him to fill in so many practical things for spiritual applications that He did not address in the Gospels. Also, he did this hands on through Paul, giving us this spiritual training that for whatever reason, many of us miss out on.
 
Necessary for Victories

The Lord in recent years is also raising up brothers and sisters who have captured certain principles in scripture and put them into practice. Those who have been through negative experiences seem to offer the most Hope because we can see they have won their way through to some mighty victories, they share with us. We can all take part in this when we seek The Lord for answers like they did or try solutions God has
given us through them.
 
The Holy Spirit revealed to Liberty Savvard years ago that we build up protective walls around ourselves we think are helping us cope better. The way we respond and react to people and life’s situations can be the very things that defeat us. She explains how the lurks and strategies of the enemy are dependent on these (or creating them) to gain advantage over us. So as long as we are in this earthly tent, we need to be aware of these things and not consider ourselves exempt.
 
The best way we can deal with the enemy’s strongholds often is to tear down the thought patterns that came with them in the first place. It is by far preferable to always nip things in the bud – temptations and all – before they become difficult to manage.
 
You know that often, when he sees us to be a threat, he seeks to spoil things. At times he devises mischief when two Christians are experiencing much blessing or are about to be used by God in a certain way. My friend and myself were caught off guard.
Please try not to be.

Added Words of Comfort
 
The Word of God can help you to think soundly and maybe prevent you from doing something you can regret because if given a good chance, it can restore you to a peaceful state of mind. You can even be given insight into a situation………it may also cause you to think, act and speak differently to what you would have or could have.
 
Yes, this is a good way of preserving good relationships at the present time
and/or potentially good relationships. Such a practice will help you grow
and make your steps sure.

You can be a blessing to others and they can continue to be a blessing to you.
Peace, my brother and sister, to all your friendships and communications in Christ Jesus. Together, we can be a happy family and a light to those around us as the
Love of God becomes evidenced in our hearts and lives.

The Challenge
 
“See how they love each-other” and more men, women and children will come into
the Ark of Refuge. But what safety will they sense if our communications are unsettled? Perhaps they handle some of their relationships better in a world of stress?
 
Please do consider the content of this post seriously – each one of you – and we can make our Heavenly Father’s Heart Joyful that He sent His Son to Save Us.
 
Yours in Christ Jesus.
 





3 Comments to Kindness and Conflict among Christians:

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Anna on Wednesday, 28 October 2015 11:56 PM
I read a few paragraphs of this after your last post on being Christlike. I love the way you include yourself towards the end here. I will be back to read more thoroughly. This is the most meaningful Christian Blog I have ever found and your words in these two posts have brought me comfort.
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Sheree on Tuesday, 9 February 2016 6:33 AM
It's good that you wrote this post Janet. For all that humans hurt and disappoint us God is only ever working for our good! I know His goodness will endure forever and that my forgiveness is assured through what Jesus has done! So while on this earth we are not perfect we look forward to the Return of our Lord and Saviour and the day our bodies change to be like Christ!
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Janet Vargas on Tuesday, 9 February 2016 11:47 AM
Yes Sheree, thank you. I know you have had some experiences and that you practice forgiveness. You look to The Lord for strength to do this at times and your spirit is so sweet. You also show kindness of heart and trust in the Goodness of God. We have a promise in His Word that He will show MERCY to the merciful. May our Heavenly Father be Gracious to you and others who like to reflect the Nature of Christ - and if you don't, today is a good time to start.

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