“If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.”
It is possible to live peaceably with most people; if your personalities clash, you either avoid the person or are distantly polite.
However, there are people with whom it is not possible to live peaceably.
Perhaps when you give an inch they take 10,000 miles.
Maybe they are offended by everything you say, and let you know it.
Or have hurt you so badly in the past (or continue to hurt you) you just cannot face them.
Or their values directly oppose yours—and they enjoy trying to force them on you.
What to do?
- Avoid the person if possible.
- Pray that the Lord will give you patience and grace if you have to face the person, and that if words are necessary, the Holy Spirit will give you the right ones. And (this is really difficult!) pray for the person. The only thing I could pray for one person who used to be in my life was, “Please Lord give her Your peace.”
- Remember the words that follow the above verse: “Never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord. To the contrary, if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:19-20.
- Hard as it is (I know, I’ve been in the situation!) be kind if you have to have contact, and let the Lord handle the rest. He knows what has happened; He knows what the best solution is. It might not be your solution; pray for His peace with whatever happens.
Who in your life is impossible to live with peaceably? What will you do next time you see that person? Pray for the Lord’s guidance, and that you will show His love, despite the circumstances.
I’m also blogging the A to Z Challenge at Home is Where the Mom Is.