Good Conflict; Bad Conflict

Conflict is a given; how we respond is a choice.

1 Kings 21:1-29

Reference: “His wife Jezebel came in and asked him, “Why are you so sullen? Why won’t you eat?”” ‭‭1 Kings‬ ‭21:5‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Explore: There’s a bad way and a terrible way to deal with conflict. It seems that in 1 Kings 21 we hear examples of both.

To begin with, when King Ahab doesn’t get his own way he goes to his room and sulks. Secondly, his wife Jezebel hears her husband hasn’t got his own way so she schemes to have the other person killed.

We have the two extremes in the one chapter – passive and incredibly aggressive! Both examples of how we should not respond to conflict.

Application: Conflict is inevitable. As humans we all have opinions and at times one person’s opinion clashes with another person’s opinion.

Conflict is a given; how we respond is a choice. Instead of being passive (Ahab going away and sulking) or aggressive (Jezebel taking whatever she wants) we need to find ways to be assertive. This is being able to express our own opinions without squashing the other person’s views.

It’s not easy. That’s why we have wars, marriage breakdowns and companies that fall apart because we all struggle with conflict.

But just because it is inevitable does not mean we shouldn’t keep working at resolving conflict. Conflict has rarely improved a situation but once we resolve conflict relationships and lives can keep moving forward.

Prayer: Lord, you created us to live in unity with one another but so often we fail. Give us Your love and wisdom to mend broken relationships and bless others through our love. Amen.

How has conflict impacted your life?

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This article was written by Linda Bailey

Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.