I confess. I like a good argument. Bickering can be fun. It’s definitely entertaining, and can be more interesting than a bland, superficial conversation. Keep in mind, please, that I’m talking about the “blah, blah, blah” conversations. The ones where you find your mind wandering or your eyes closing as you nod off…. Not everyone agrees with me about bickering. It’s important for me to remember is that it isn’t fun or entertaining to everyone. Some people have to be “right”, disregarding truth in the process, or they think that bickering is arguing. (For those of us who are perfect, this is moot, because we are always right!)
I considered myself to be one of those perfect people for years. My thoughts and opinions were unquestionably the best. What I didn’t accept was how utterly broken I was. Oh, the lies we tell ourselves! Thank GOD for His Saving Grace! Accepting our own brokenness, our imperfections, is difficult at best. I think it’s much easier to realize these things in others (Matthew 7:3, Luke 6:41). I will always struggle at times about having to be being “right,” and remember that sometimes – MOST times – it really isn’t important.
I still enjoy a good argument. Maybe I should join a debate club!! Instead of having to be right all of the time, I would truly prefer to be as Christ wants us to be. The Apostle Paul wrote a lot on this subject, so I know I’m not alone in this struggle.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you.” – Ephesians 4:31-32 NLT
Isn’t that just a kick in the pants! When I consider how much God has forgiven me, there are no grounds left for me to hold a grudge against anyone, or to demand that I be right. It’s important to recognize the difference in light hearted bickering and arguing, and to know the person you are engaging with. If it makes that person or the people around you uncomfortable, then it becomes a tool for the enemy.
“Again I say, don’t get involved in foolish, ignorant arguments that only start fights. A servant of the LORD must not quarrel but must be kind to everyone, be able to teach, and be patient with difficult people.” – 2 Timothy 2:23-24 NLT
If you are curious about what a Christian should look like, Ephesians chapter 4 and 2 Timothy 2 are two great places to start reading…. and the whole New Testament! Lots of good stuff there. I need to hold tight to this verse from the prophet Jeremiah:
“But Blessed are those who trust in the LORD and have made the LORD their Hope and Confidence.” – Jeremiah 17:7 NLT