Strife: Whose Fault Is It Really?
Adapted from “Getting Along with People” by Andrew Wommack
The greatest thing any of us can do is to love God and to love people.
That is the number one thing that God has given us to do. Until this becomes the focus of our lives, we are not going to benefit from His love working in us, and we will give Satan a tremendous inroad.
Most of the problems we have with people are the result of envy and strife. It might be our fault, their fault, or both, but strife is still the result. James 3:16 states, “For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.”
So, how do you deal with strife or other problems in relationships?
First, evaluate the source. It is always one of four: It could be your fault, the other person’s fault, or both of you may be at fault. The fourth source occurs less often and is not the result of strife: God may want you to end a relationship that is hindering your future.
Most people do not want to accept personal responsibility. It’s much easier just to point a finger at someone else. The danger with this is that you can develop a victim mentality. You begin to believe that the reason you act the way you do is because of what other people have done to you. You don’t believe it is ever your fault. Always begin by looking at yourself first.
Often the problem is only in your mind and is the result of judging the motives behind the actions of others. You jump to conclusions and take offense based on speculations. By assuming people’s motives are good, most offenses will never develop.
But what if it’s the other person’s fault? No matter what they have done, you have a choice in your response. You can start walking in love toward another person anytime you decide to. If we compared all the hurtful things people have done to us to what Jesus suffered for our sake, our suffering becomes insignificant.
Most of the time broken relationships are the fault of both the people involved. The key to resolving problems in all relationships begins with forgiveness.
Forgiveness is the most powerful weapon of all in ending strife and restoring relationships.
In some instances, it might actually be God causing a relationship to break up. There are some relationships that God just doesn’t want you to have. For example, He doesn’t want you to be unequally yoked with unbelievers. He also doesn’t want you to have relationships that might keep you from your destiny. However, this should not be misused as an excuse to end a relationship because you’re unhappy.
The Bible tells us it’s inevitable that offenses will come, but we can always make the choice to forgive and look to Jesus who paid for our forgiveness!