Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Mind Your Own Business

"Like one who takes a dog by the ears is he who passes by and meddles with strife not belonging to him." Proverbs 26:17

As a lifelong Southern Baptist, I firmly believe that universal application of this verse by members of all churches would remove most of the gastric distress experienced by staff members. I will quickly and truthfully admit that I wrestle with this issue. When I hear about a friend or family member that has been wronged, I want to rip open my shirt and jump in as the hero to save the day. But Scripture makes it clear that I should stay out of strife that is not mine.

Then again, I remember hearing Jesus say something about this issue too...

"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God" Matthew 5:9

So how should we reconcile these two verses? Personally, I have come to the conclusion that we are allowed to get involved with the strife of others in three situations: First, if we are asked and invited by one of the parties to help resolve the situation. NOT to sit around and gripe about it, but if we are asked to give Biblical counsel on what they might have done wrong and how they should reach a point of reconciliation with the other party. Second, if both parties ask you to act as an arbiter or mediator to again, give Biblical counsel with regard to resolving the issue. The third option, which should be approached only after specific prayer, is in the following criteria. You must know, have a relationship and be respected by both parties. Both parties must have dug in their heels and are no longer trying to resolve the situation, and are leaving the offense to brood without forgiveness.

If one of those situations is not present, just leave that doggy alone and keep walking!

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