Addressing the Underlying Causes of Conflict – Part 7

differentiation-psychology

A Biblical Response To Each Dimension (3 of 3)

  1. How To Be A Non-Anxious Presence In the Midst of Conflict To Help People Listen Well and Own Their Own Issues

The need to be strong, right, in control, and successful is so patently rooted in American evangelicalism that it is no wonder that our church members are the same way. If the interim comes in exactly the same way it can be like shaking nitroglycerin. “I’m here and I’ve got the answer, you can all relax now!” Who are we trying to kid? Unfortunately, this can be a real temptation to feel this way but it would not be an emotionally healthy way to respond.[1]

  1. Maintain a “shepherd’s heart.” Having been hurt by the Church we still love the Church.
  2. Walk in brokenness and humility. This flies in the face of our evangelical culture. In our attempts at being vulnerable, in various interactions as well as from the pulpit, we will have people use them against us. But without brokenness and and humility there is no blessing.
  3. Lovingly state (and remind people as necessary) that you are not the problem. While you certainly have your own problems the current problems in the church were there before you got there.
  4. Self differentiate, which involves knowing who you are and who you are not (in relation to others) and being able to act with the knowledge of who you are even when the anxiety of others tempts you not to.[2]

[1] Miles: 15.8-15.9.

[2] Adapted from Failure of Nerve: 236.

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