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Conflict patterns

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Conflict patterns

(Acts 6:1-6)

In Acts 6 we have the election of the first group of deacons in the church. The new group was formed because of a conflict. There were two kinds of poor widows in the early Christian church: Palestinian (Aramaic speaking) widows and Hellenistic (Greek speaking) widows. A helpful pattern is shown from Acts 6:1-6, useful for us today:

Listen carefully: The disciples listened carefully to the case!

Consider openly: They recognized the inequity. Honest assessment is critical.

Remove prejudices: They were willing to change their attitudes and prejudices in light of their new belief in the Lord Jesus.

Think creatively: They came with a new solution involving the whole group. A team was elected from the people.

Conflict involves a fight that takes place when two or more people have goals that seem to be unable to coexist. While conflicts often are unhelpful and intimidating, they also can serve a useful purpose in explaining goals, unifying a group, and even bringing previously neglected disagreements to a point of discussion and decision.

Sometimes conflicts are not being solved due to:

Lack of commitment

Too many people seem to be afraid of making commitments. Loyalty to friends, family and church is given only lip service and then discarded when it gets in the way of self-fulfilment or personal advancement.

Communication failure

The essence of good interpersonal relations is communication. When communication is broken, interpersonal tensions often follow, but even when two people want to communicate there can be several reasons for failure.

The process can be hindered when:

The sender:

- is unclear in his mind about the message;

- is afraid or ashamed to send a clear message;

- does not put the message into clearly understandable words or gestures;

- says one thing but sends a different message by behaviour.

The receiver:

- is unable to understand the message;

- does not want to listen, because of disinterest or mistrust;

- adds his own interpretation to the message.

Listen carefully! Consider openly! Remove prejudices! Think creatively!

Dr. Czeslaw Bassara ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ;

James N. Spurgeon wrote:

'A job is at your choice; a ministry is at Christ's call. In a job you expect to receive; in a ministry you expect to give. In a job you give something to get something; in a ministry you return something that has already been given to you. A job depends on your abilities; a ministry depends on your availability to God. A job done well brings you praise; a ministry done well brings honour to Christ.'

This ministry is to bring honour to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!

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