Valerie Jones

{Live with Purpose. Lead with Passion.}

I am a blogger, worship leader, and speaker who helps worship leaders and team members connect with purpose and passion in life and leadership by offering encouragement, community, and practical resources so that they can thrive in life and leadership, both on and off the platform.

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Filtering by Tag: conflict

{Confront | Day 26 of 31}

Ready? Go.

"I don't like confrontation," she said. I don't like it either! The word by definition implies hostility.  But, what about conflict? Conflict (or disagreement)  is an expected part of human relationships. We can't all agree on everything one hundred percent of the time. That's fair, right? It's certainly not something we should stir up (see Proverbs 6:14, 19; 10:12; 15:18; 16:28; 29:22). When it comes, though, we ought to address it.

Disagreement doesn't have to disintegrate into a confrontation. Conflict can be handled well through honest, gracious conversation. But, I don't know if we've done that well in the church. Here are a few things I try to remember in the midst of conflict.

Words matter. Use them wisely. Carefully. Perhaps, even sparingly. Listen first. Then respond. If there is a gap to be filled in, ask a question before making an unfair assumption. Always, always extend grace and mercy. 1 Corinthians 13. Always.



{Off | Day 22 of 31}

Ready? Go.

My teammates and I used to tell each other "Shake it off, make the next play!"  It's good advice, on the court and off the court.

It is so easy to be distracted and tangled up in what's going on around us. It trips us up, knocks off our game. I've had to shake off quite a bit over the last year. It's exhausting. Sometimes, I did fine. Other times, not so much. A friend of mine who saw me around Christmastime last year told me recently that she could see the heaviness in my eyes and could feel it in the air. It was always thick, suffocating. Eventually, our family moved away from the situation. That didn't go very well either, hurtful words and accusations were flung about and landed like daggers. But we figured creating distance would offer some relief. It did, for a second. But, it would creep back up now and then and try to entangle us. Even as recently as today someone said something about me that wasn't true or kind. Church hurt is one of the worst kinds of hurt, you know. I figured out that sometimes shaking it off is a process. And, without God's grace and help, whatever progress I make won't stick.

But then, there's this: Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12: 1-3, NIV

Fix our eyes on Jesus. Do not lose heart. Yes. There's nothing else to add really. This is the key to everything. All the time. In every situation.