Words of Hope: Learning from Conflict  

I appreciate my dad so much because of how he dispelled the fear and chaos of conflict. Conflict can be part of a passionate life. If you don’t care and feel no passion, there is no need to disagree. Whatever anyone wants goes, but this is a poor way to live. There are things worth fighting for.  

Conflict means a serious disagreement or argument. We must stand in the tension of the crossroads of what matters most.  

Arguments worth having:  

What is the best way to live?  

How do we reconcile hurt without descending into violence, victimhood, or complaint?  

How do those in power listen and notice ways they harm those with less power?

Most people are conflict adverse which causes them to bury their conflictual feelings until they boil over or simmer into apathy. Saying nothing doesn’t mean you are not conflictual. Conflict is still present. Just not addressed.  

Recently one of our daughters had a heated argument. She said she felt sad about the exchange. I told her she should also feel thankful because healthy conflict makes us stronger and closer. Joan of Arc met conflict with wisdom and total devotion to God. She held the banner of love in the fight for justice and peace. She never killed others but demonstrated absolute courage in the face of hatred.  

Conflict aversion can lead to greater struggles but when we enter conflict with courage and compassion, we can learn what this disagreement has to teach us and ask God for wisdom.  

There is one who speaks rashly like the thrusts of a sword, But the tongue of the wise brings healing.Proverbs 12:18