Jul 6th 2021 · Day 187
When I first came to know the Lord, I was passionate about sharing my new-found faith. I suppose I was a real ‘God-botherer’, and happy to tell just about anyone who opposed me why they were wrong and I was right!
In 2 Timothy 2:23-25, we read about Paul telling his young friend: ‘Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness.’ Granted, that can be a problem at times when faced with people who perhaps aggressively challenge our faith, but gentleness may often diffuse a difficult situation and even encourage people to think.
Although we might feel as if we want to shout, get impatient, or engage in an argument with people who think differently about matters of faith, this rarely results in anything good (see v. 14). Let’s be kind and gentle – an attitude that in itself is a witness to a long-suffering and patient God. It’s a much better way.
Besides, sometimes people can be entrenched in real error; in which case we need to pray for discernment, to know the right words to say at the right time, trusting God to shine His supernatural light into areas we cannot naturally speak into.
True, sometimes we may have to graciously walk away or politely shut the door. But let’s always do it with a good grace. After all, as verse 25 goes on to assure us, maybe God is at work in people already, inviting them to turn to Him and know Him.
Pause and reflect: Is there someone you know who is caught in error of any sort? Is this someone who engages you in ‘word battles’ around faith? Ask God for a different perspective, for His own words and grace, and trust Him to speak into their lives.
Sheila Jacobs is a Christian writer and editor, and an award-winning author. She is also a retreat leader and day chaplain at a retreat house. She loves listening to people’s stories, and encouraging writers to hone their
potential. She is passionate about pursuing God and helping others meet with Jesus.
© Victory Church UK 2021