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Summary: Do you want relationships with little or no conflict? Look at part 2 of this series.

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Qualities for low conflict Christians Part # 2

John 15:12

“This is my commandment that you love one another as I have loved you!”

Last week we talked about some low conflict qualities of Christians. We talked about the Grace of Humor, Grace of Humility, Grace of Empathy, Grace of Optimism.

This week we will continue to look at some gifts or graces that should be present in the life of the Christian. We have the same starting point…we must love one another as Christ loved us.

Intro…

I. Grace of Flexibility---Compromise

Did you know that compromise is not an unclean word? As a matter of fact if you survive in inter-personal relationships, you will have to somewhere, along the way -- learn how to compromise. Now I must clarify what I mean by compromise.

1. Being flexible or being willing to compromise does not mean that you are wishy-washy when it comes to principles in God’s word. As a matter of fact we find that everywhere that compromise is mentioned in Scripture the outcome is not good. Let’s think of the story of Jonah for just a little bit. In Jonah 1:1 we find that the call goes out to Jonah to go to Ninevah to preach the gospel but Jonah decides that he wants to go to Tarshish instead. Now here, we have the beginning stages of a big problem that Jonah is going to face. Jonah faced at least three biggies--things. He faced high water, he faced fierce winds, and he faced the belly of the whale, in relationship to the wrath of God. My friends, if you think that you can compromise with the specific principles in God’s word or the calling that Almighty God has placed on your life then you better brace yourself for high water, and fierce winds, the stinking belly of a whale(so to speak) and the wrath of God. Flexibility does not mean compromise. So what does it mean to have the grace of flexibility helping us to enjoy low conflict relationships?

2. Flexibility means we do not have to run every show. Flexibility means that we allow for a little time for things to be worked out. READ 2 Corinthians 1:15-1:24

LET ME SAY THIS: A CHANGE OF PLAN DOES NOT NECESSARILY IMPLY COMPROMISE nor does it bring into question ONE’S SINCERITY AND COMMITMENT.

Paul made plans to visit Corinth (1:15-16) He did not make these plans lightly. He made them with commitment (:17) -- with the commitment which characterizes God, who fulfills all His promises (:18-22) But Paul chose to change his plans -- to spare them discipline that was needed at that time (II COR 1:23 - 2:4)

Paul knew that this process of disciplining those who needed it in the Corinthian church would be painful for the Corinthians and Paul decided to give it a little time (1:23 - 2:3) READ

By giving the Corinthians time to deal with their problems, Paul could make a joyful visit later. (2:3-4)

You see, being flexible does not mean that you compromise in any way it just means that you may be allowing the Holy Spirit to deal with the situation that would have taken you a lifetime to repair.

Let me bring it home…

A New York family bought a ranch out West where they intended to raise cattle. One time some friends visited and asked if the ranch had a name. "Well," said the would-be cattleman, "I wanted to name it the Bar-J. My wife favored naming it Suzy-Q, one son liked the Flying-W, and the other wanted the Lazy-Y. So we’re calling it the Bar-J-Suzy-Q-Flying-W-Lazy-Y." Then the friend inquired further, "But where are all your cattle?" And the young in the business cattle rancher explained that not a single cow survived the branding."

D.A.C. News.

You see, sometimes compromise, being flexible is good.

The Grace of Flexibility

II. Grace of Self Control

(Story, working on this sermon, my computer crashed at least 6 times…it was all I could do to maintain a sense of peace…)

The Bible talks about self control quite a bit. Paul in addressing those who want to get married says in I Corinthians 7:9 that if you cannot exercise self control concerning the opposite sex then you should get married. Of course Paul had some interesting ideas about marriage. He said in I Corinthians chapter 7, verse 1 that it is good for a man not to touch a woman. Paul offered an interesting angle on this topic of marriage.

Paul also had some interesting things to say concerning athletes and this process of self control. 1Co 9:25 Paul says, “everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then {do it} to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. (I was talking to Dakotah Gettler the other day about his wrestling. He said he has to stay at 162 pounds…man I haven’t seen that since the second grade) It’s called self control.

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