Healthy Relationships

Proverbs 16:7 When a man’s ways are pleasing to the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

When there is a problem in a marriage, who’s fault is it? When there is disagreement between a parent and their kid, who’s fault is it? When there is a conflict between people at their workplace, whose fault is it? When there is conflict between two neighbors, whose fault is it?

When we were raising our eight kids, and two of them got into a fight about something, and Patty or I intervened, usually the first words out of one or both of their mouths was, “It is his fault.” That statement seemed to justify whatever behavior issues were taking place.

I have done many hours of counseling over the last 40 years with people who are in the midst of a disagreement, and when I ask about the reason for the conflict one or both point to the other person as the reason for the lack of unity in their relationship, “it is their fault.”

In conflicts that I have been involved with as a counselor, neither person asked any of these questions, “what is God’s role in this situation in our relationship?” “Could God make us one, could He fix this conflict?” “What would it take for God to become an active third party in my marriage?” “What would I need to do for God to change my son’s heart?”

Proverbs 16:7 has been my main “go-to” verse for years in any conflict that I have been part of, which prompts me to ask myself the question, “what do I need to do to prompt God to work in my ‘enemies’ heart, ” and then a follow-up question to myself, “what things possibly need to be changed in my heart for God to be pleased with me?”

In summary, God loves peace and unity; He has the power to change any person’s heart and behavior easily; when one person humbly says, “Lord, change me, ” He will, and then He will change the other person as well.

Proverbs 16:7 works incredibly well, but someone has to say, “it is my fault, ” before God gets involved.

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