MGMT 671 – Applied Negotiations
MGMG 592 – Mediation
GOVT 581 – Conflict Resolution Skills
Going back to school? Georgetown University offers a “Masters of Arts in Conflict Resolution.” I wonder how many of us would select this as our major? Most avoid conflict at all costs. (Especially when we have to pay to talk about it?) Yet, conflicts seem unavoidable. They seem to find their way to us. Will we ever escape them? What is the best way to resolve them? Is there any hope?!
Until Christ returns, we will continue to encounter conflicts. A wide spectrum of reasons exists for this. The desires of our own hearts is one reason (“What is the source of conflicts among you? Is not the source your pleasures that wage war in your members?” James 4:1). Add to that the competing desires of those around us. Add to that the fact that we are Christians living in a hostile world. Conflicts will continue to occur in our lives: in marriages, parenting, school, work, and church.
You can successfully navigate them (I will define “successfully” in a moment). You do not need to passively bounce from one explosion to the next; you do not need to drive through life with burning heaps of relationship wreckage in the rearview from conflicts unresolved. As a Christian, you have God’s Holy Spirit. He can bring God’s sufficient, holy Word to bear on your conflicts. Peacemaker Ministries produces a resource you can access to improve your navigation in moments of conflict. You can access this brochure by clicking here: “The 4 G’s of Peacemaking.” Success in conflict is defined by faithfulness to God’s Word, not results. Some conflicts are complex and may not be instantly resolved. You can still honor God in how you walk through them.
Finally, you can grow in this area. In Christ, it is possible. Consider how many conflicts you experience in a year and then consider how much time you’ve invested in getting better at resolving them. It’s time. For all the discomfort, lost sleep, anger, sadness, and high blood pressure—it’s time we gave some energy to sharpening our skills. You can experience peace, even in conflict.
Conflicts will remain part of our lives. But as Christians, we can resolve them. (Even without a degree.) Christ resolved the biggest conflict of our lives; by His power, we may manage the ones we face. May the Lord of peace continually grant you peace in every circumstance.
With the affection of Christ, Pastor Michael