I Don’t Like Confrontations!

conflict is a part of life and certainly a part of ministry. been dealing with some lately and it’s wearying, draining, and down-right exhausting. to be honest there have been moments this week where i’ve wanted to pop someone (i didn’t, mind you…but i wanted to). and i know you’re not that different than me. you probably have some conflict lurking around too. if not, duck! because there’s probably some coming your way!

"i don't like confrontations!"

here’s 4 things i’ve been reminded of lately with the conflict i’ve had to deal with:

1. deal with it quickly

dragging it out and avoiding the tough conversation only makes the issue harder. it’s like raw chicken in the garbage can… take out the trash now or wake up to something funky in the morning!

bill hybels at the leadership summit last year said that they give employees with a bad attitude at Willow 30 days to get it right, or they’re out on the curb, regardless of how valuable the employee is to the team. i think there’s wisdom in that.


2. how we deal with it is usually more important than the issue itself

let’s be honest, as christians we’re not always great at handling conflict. in fact some of the ugliest approaches to conflict that i’ve ever seen have happened in a church!

meet face to face, don’t write a letter. email works great for transferring information, not emotion. start with a compliment, insert the challenge, and then end with another compliment. be humble.


3. there’s always a lesson to be learned

with every criticism there’s usually at least a little bit of truth to consider. and there’s always things we can learn for next time to either avoid or soften the hurt.


4. count yourself worthy to suffer like Jesus

1 Peter 4:13 was a big encouragement to me this morning. Jesus had quite a few conflicts in his day, and when we slow down enough to consider this truth, our pain rubs shoulders with joy. “wow… i get to experience some of the same stuff that the creator of the universe and savior of my soul did because i’ve been living and leading like him!”


One thought on “I Don’t Like Confrontations!

  1. One of the challenges of volunteers is this:

    They are not paid.
    Their motivation for “working” can be 100% different from staff.

    This makes the identical model of paid staff not easily applied to a volunteer “job”.

    Rewards are different, incentives are different. Attempts to shoe-horn the same model used for paid staff will generally have poor results with a volunteer. It has the danger of demonstrating a lack of caring which can send a very hazardous message to the balance of the volunteer group.

    The Hybels model of …employees with a bad attitude at Willow 30 days to get it right, or they’re out on the curb, regardless of how valuable the employee is to the team.” if applied to all volunteer groups would swiftly empty most groups ranks.

    It has relevance but that “identical to staff” model is not “directly” relevant to a volunteer based group.

    Should some volunteers find something different to do?.
    At times the fit isn’t there, or is no longer there.

    Will some volunteers need “help” in making that decision.
    But how that is done can make or break the group.

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