Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Marked by Quarreling

Do your children regularly quarrel with you?  Their siblings?  Their friends?  Those in authority?

I'm told it's "normal" for children to quarrel with the above groups.
Many say...Children are immature with an incessant need to prove their individuality, they'll grow out of it.

Perhaps this is true.
However, I can't help but question the validity of this claim when I see grown adults who regularly quarrel.  Whether they are at home, work, or socializing they find themselves quarreling with family, co-workers, and friends at every turn.  They are simply quarrelsome people.

A quarrelsome person is contentious, likely to cause an argument.

A quarrlesome person stirs up dissension and trouble.

A quarrelsome person is often wise to knowing exactly how to push someone's buttons.

A quarrelsome person is marked by quarreling.

Do you personally know an adult who is marked by quarreling
For some of us, we'd need to look no further than a mirror.

If our hope is that our children will "grow out" of their tendency to quarrel, then clearly they must see US demonstrate peacemaking choices.

"If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone."
Romans 12:18

I love the practicality of this Scripture.  It recognizes there will be situations where it's nearly impossible to keep peace.  But it challenges the individual to do whatever he/she can to keep peace.  It eliminates one's fleshly tendency to make excuses or blame others for quarreling...it points the finger and responsibility right back to self. 

As far as it depends on us, we are called to be people who purposely try to make/keep peace.

So the question WE must ask ourselves in all situations and relationships is simple this:  What can I do to keep peace? 

Similarly,

When I see the boys take Allie's elephant and taunt her with it. the question to ask is:  What can YOU do to keep peace?

When I see Grayden purposely ignore Cole who is trying to talk to him because he knows Cole will get frustrated at his silence, the question to ask is:  What can YOU do to keep peace?

When I see Cole stubbornly get in the way of Grayden so he cannot open the door and leave, the question to ask is:  What can YOU do to keep peace?

I sincerely hope that my children see me being a peacemaker rather than someone who is marked by quarreling.  And my prayer is that as they grow and mature, they will be wise in pursuing peaceful relationships.

Let's pray!

Jesus, You taught that "blessed are the peacemakers" [Matthew 5:9].  My prayer is that my children would be marked as peacemakers rather than by quarrels.  Would you teach and equip them with the wisdom to pursue peace in all their relationships (even with perfect strangers).  I pray they would choose Your wisdom for peace and thus, avoid making excuses for quarrels and pointing the finger when trouble ensues.  I pray that as much as it depends on them, that they would live at peace with everyone. 






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