Summary: The Holy Spirit gives us God’s secret wisdom to handle any conflict in our personal lives or ministries. Paul wrote, "We speak of God’s secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began...but God has reveal

Thirteen Ways the Holy Spirit Helps Resolve Conflicts (I Cor. 2:1-16)

Illustration: Many years ago a speech research unit at Kenyon College conducted a test in cooperation with the US Navy. The purpose was to discover how the tone quality of the voice affected sailors when they were given orders. A number of experiments revealed that the way a person was addressed determined to a large extent the kind of response he would make.

For example, when an individual was spoken to in a soft voice, he would answer in a similar manner. But when he was shouted at, his reply came back in the same sharp tone. This was true whether the communication was given face-to-face, over the intercom, or by telephone.

This study reminds me of Proverbs 15:1, "A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger." What we say and how we say it not only makes a difference in the reaction we receive, but it also determines whether conflict or peace will result. How many arguments could be avoided and tense situations relaxed if we practiced the truth of this verse!

The next time someone speaks to you in a harsh or angry tone, reverse the trend by expressing meekness, quietness of spirit, and loving concern. What a difference a soft answer can make in our relationships!

So many folks use words that are harsh,

When angry, they speak their mind;

But Christ would have us reverse this trend

With words that are always kind. (Our Daily Bread)

To get out of a hard situation, try a soft answer.

1. The Holy Spirit gives us God’s secret wisdom to handle any conflict in our personal lives or ministries. Paul wrote, "We speak of God’s secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began...but God has revealed it to us by His Spirit." (I Cor. 2:7,10) Ask the Lord to give you the emotional, mental, cultural, Biblical, relational, organizational, ministry and spiritual wisdom to be able to handle conflicts as Jesus would.

2. The Holy Spirit gives us the peace to be able to realize that we are not responsible to solve every conflict in our organization. Some conflicts are beyond our ability to resolve so we must learn to handle only the problems within our God given area of responsibility. "Cast all your anxiety on him because He cares for you." (I Pet .5:7) Pray for the serenity to cast your conflicts, outside of your responsibility, on the Lord.

3. The Holy Spirit uses conflicts to teach us how the Lord can use them to make us better rather than bitter. "See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many." (Heb 12:15) Ask the Lord to help you learn, grow and get better as a result of your enlightened perspective whenever you encounter conflicts. (James 1:2-5)

4. The Holy Spirit allows us to become a positive example to others in how they may successfully manage conflicts. Jesus said, "Let your light shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven." (Matt 5:16) Ask the Lord to let your cool headed approach to solving conflicts provide a positive example for others to think, pray and consult the Godly before allowing their emotions to get out of control.

5. The Holy Spirit refines us and our organization through successful management of conflicts. Paul writes, "Tribulation works perseverance and perseverance proven character and proven character, hope." Ask the Lord to help you gain a more positive perspective toward conflicts, adversity and disagreements. Allow the Lord to do whatever is necessary to help you and your organization complete all of God’s plans.

6. The Holy Spirit uses conflicts to show us where are weak so we can become more mature. Paul wrote, "Speaking the truth in love, let us grow up into all aspects into Him who is the Head, even Christ." (Eph. 4:15) Ask the Lord for a teachable spirit so that you and your church can be all that God wants it to be.

7. The Holy Spirit teaches us the benefits of the body of Christ during conflicts. When one person is not able to bring resolution to a conflict, God sends someone else in the body of Christ who is specially equipped to find whatever answers that are needed. Paul wrote, "Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus. They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful to them." (Rom. 16:3) Ask the Lord to teach us more of the benefits of working cooperatively with the church.

8. The Holy Spirit shows us more of God’s mighty power during conflicts. Paul wrote, "He said, ‘My grace is sufficient for you. For my power is made perfect in your weakness." (2 Cor. 12:9) Ask the Lord to teach you more about His power through the conflicts in your personal life, your relationships and your ministries.

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