Day 56 – Tackling Confrontation
On: December 26, 2014   |   By: admin   |   Under: Blog   |   Comments: Comments are off

In the synagogue there was a man possessed by a demon, an impure spirit. He cried out at the top of his voice, “Go away! What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are – the Holy One of God!” “Be quiet!” Jesus said sternly. “Come out of him!” Then the demon threw the man down before them all and came out without injuring him. All the people were amazed and said to each other, “What words these are! With authority and power he gives orders to impure spirits and they come out!” And the news about him spread throughout the surrounding area. [Luke 4:33-37]

I’ll leave discussion on casting out demons to those who know what they are talking about. What I would like briefly to consider is a slight twist on this: dealing with difficult personality issues, particularly in the workplace.

Just before I started writing this (at home), I had a call from the office from a colleague who felt she had been badly let down in an important situation by another colleague: both great team members, both reporting into the author, but a bit of history between the two; not easy to resolve.

My first response – ugh, I hate this sort of thing, why can’t people behave themselves! As I then strolled to the shops, I chatted to God about this situation, which would need addressing after the weekend. And I felt myself pointed towards how Jesus dealt with people. He didn’t recoil at the situations before Him, or allow Himself to freeze with worry at the difficulty of resolving things. Jesus had a confidence in who He was and seemed prepared for all eventualities, confronting the cause of the issue with authority but gentleness.

“Well”, I hear you say, “He was the Son of a God”. Indeed. But we are called to be His agents today and are equipped to tackle situations as He was. Where I fall down is that I don’t take hold anywhere near as frequently or comprehensively enough of the tools He provides me with, through the Holy Spirit. We’ll come back to this over the next few days as we watch Jesus at work.

Meantime, my two friends at work? As I have asked God how best to deal with the situation, He has given me principles, not a pre-packed solution … Deal caringly, ask many questions, listen carefully, seek discernment, try to open the eyes of the person who’s done the letting down. Smile. Enjoy. Dare to achieve a win-win outcome, where the insensitivity of the original situation is redeemed by my sensitive handling of this review. Do not allow frustration or annoyance to reign. Give grace space. Thank you Jesus for showing me the way. I’ll let you know how it went!

Give Grace Space


Father God, transform our hearts that we might be peacemakers as we seek to resolve our day to day challenges. Give us confidence to take a different stance, trusting in the authority You give those who follow Jesus’ leading and the Spirit’s empowering. Open the eyes of those we engage  to see grace at work. Amen.

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