Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. "In your anger do not sin": Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. …

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Character Check
How well do I handle conflict?

In Business Terms
With the help of my wife, Christian counselors, and other trusted friends, I'm learning a more constructive way to negotiate conflict. I'm learning to admit to the person involved that what they said or did hurt me, and slowly I'm learning to feel that hurt inside. I'm learning to say "ouch" and talk about what that ouch means, rather than discounting relational wounds and powering past them.

As I get better at acknowledging the hurt that conflict causes me, I also become more aware of the hurt that conflict causes others. This has led me to approach conflict resolution with a much gentler spirit, both for my sake and for others' sake.

Bottom line, I'm talking about a kind of vulnerability in relationships that did not come naturally to me. But I really believe it's a necessary part of obedience to Christ.

Something to Think About
Coping with difficult people is always a problem, especially if the difficult person happens to be yourself.
– Anonymous

Go Deeper

Handling Conflict

Conflict can poison the life of a church. But it can also have a positive effect. Prepare your leaders for handling conflict--and thus protect your church--by discussing '"Conflict Above Ground," an interview with Bill Hybels, pastor of Willow Creek Community Church. This interview will train your leaders to see conflict in a new light and help them deal with it in a more biblical way.