Conflict & Our Response to the Enemy

Conflict the thing most try to avoid. But, something that we must understand conflict will happen in our lives as long as people are involved in our lives. As men and women, we must understand that conflict in some case is normal because none of us are going to have the exact same opinion or viewpoint as another person in every single situation that happens in our lives. Conflict in our lives can be a good and a bad thing. When conflict becomes unresolved and has the ability to continue to grow and escalate it can become very destructive and almost unmanageable by ourselves. But, conflict can also bring good, it can bring clarity and strength in our lives when it is dealt with and handled in the correct manner.

The bible gives us many examples thru the scripture of how to handle conflict in the correct form. Jesus explained of one Himself in Matthew 18, where He tells us to make sure we handle the conflict with going to the opposing party and bring light to the conflict. And, gives us the advice to continue if the problem continues.

15 “If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offense. If the other person listens and confesses it, you have won that person back. 16 But if you are unsuccessful, take one or two others with you and go back again, so that everything you say may be confirmed by two or three witnesses. 17 If the person still refuses to listen, take your case to the church. Then if he or she won’t accept the church’s decision, treat that person as a pagan or a corrupt tax collector. ( Matthew 18:15-17 NLT )

But, in our lives as Christians, we must also understand that we have a real enemy against us. The Devil will do what he can to disrupt and destroy our lives. But, we must know how to maintain and remained focused in our lives.

As I am reading through the book Conflict Management in Leadership, at the end I believe that it has 4 practical steps that can be related to everyone’s day to day lives when facing conflict and the enemy.

When battling the enemy and having conflict in our lives, and we are striving to remained focused. The number one thing for us to do is to, trust in God. I know that some days that is easier said than done when we are under attacks of life. But, we must keep our focus on the one who is in control. We must remember His promises that are in His word.

That the Lord is with us and will protect us.

1 The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. 2 He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. 3 He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to his name. 4 Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me. ( Psalm 23:1-4 NLT )

That Jesus came to give life that is rich and satisfying.

10 The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life. ( John 10:10 NLT )

We are not promised that there will not be any bad times in our lives, but that God will be with us through them and will be with us for eternity in Heaven. So, during times of conflict and difficult situations. We must not resort to using the same tactics that the enemy is using against us. No matter how many rumors, exaggerations or groups may come against us. We must place our trust in the Lord. When the opposition becomes greater, then we must remember to pray all the greater. Not saying to neglect to work for a solution, but to also learn to seek the Lord all the more during trying times. Understand that He is the great shepherd and is in control.

Secondly, we must understand that the threat is real. Which we all know when we are in a difficult or trying situation, but we must remember at all times. Jesus throughout His physical ministry on Earth told the disciples and people over and over again about the idea of watching and praying. To be prepared for what will happen in our lives. To be prepared and know that the enemy’s real purpose ( John 10:10 ). And, to be prepared for His, Jesus, return.

42 “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming. 43 Understand this: If a homeowner knew exactly when a burglar was coming, he would keep watch and not permit his house to be broken into. 44 You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected. ( Matthew 24:42-44 NLT )

He wanted to teach the early disciples and those to follow to be prepared for things to come. So, we must as we go through our lives be prayed up and ready for those things to come in our lives.

Third, we must know the areas that we are weak in our lives and look at reinforcing those areas. Because the enemy will do whatever it can do to stop and slow us down. Meaning that we need to understand the areas of weakness that are in our lives. We see biblical examples of it in a physical and spiritual sense. In the physical, during when the prophet Nehemiah rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem. There had been attacks from the enemy, so Nehemiah stationed people at the lowest points of the wall to bring protection.

12 The Jews who lived near the enemy came and told us again and again, “They will come from all directions and attack us!” 13 So I placed armed guards behind the lowest parts of the wall in the exposed areas. I stationed the people to stand guard by families, armed with swords, spears, and bows. ( Nehemiah 4:12-13 NLT )

Spirituality as Paul writes to Timothy, where He tells Timothy to avoid foolish and godless behavior and to remain pure. To know where areas of weakness were and to run from them, and escape the Devil’s traps.

15 Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth. 16 Avoid worthless, foolish talk that only leads to more godless behavior. 17 This kind of talk spreads like cancer, as in the case of Hymenaeus and Philetus. 18 They have left the path of truth, claiming that the resurrection of the dead has already occurred; in this way, they have turned some people away from the faith. 19 But God’s truth stands firm like a foundation stone with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and “All who belong to the Lord must turn away from evil.” 20 In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions, and the cheap ones are for everyday use. 21 If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work. 22 Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts. 23 Again I say, don’t get involved in foolish, ignorant arguments that only start fights. 24 A servant of the Lord must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone, be able to teach, and be patient with difficult people. 25 Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth. 26 Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil’s trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants. ( 2 Timothy 2:15-26 NLT )

Because as people we must understand we do have weaknesses and we must not allow them to be our Achilles heel. We must ultimately know as Paul wrote in another passage, that Christ is ultimately in control of our lives and even our weaknesses.

8 Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. 9 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong. ( 2 Corinthians 12:8-10 NLT )

Lastly, to NOT QUIT! The enemy wants to hinder and stop us in our lives especially in our relationship with Christ. We must refuse to stop, to stand in our relationship with Christ and His Kingdom. To know that no matter the struggles and discouragement that happen in our lives. That we must trust in God and know that He is for us.

8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. 9 Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. 10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. ( Ephesians 2:10 NLT )

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