4 Questions to ask before entering a conflict

I was listening to the Liturgist podcast, and came across what I think are 4 great questions to process as you consider stepping into a conflict-type environment.

I, much like the writer of this post, am naturally conflict-averse but over time have seen the great fruit of engaging something that needs to be engaged and the intimacy in relationship that is created when conflict is done well. Which means, respectfully, lovingly, and seeking the others best.

A confession; On the way to a conflict-likely situation, I “rocky” myself into it by quietly chanting Like a kind of buddhist monk; “Conflict is the birthplace of intimacy”.

Here are the four questions, read the full post here;

I don’t want to add noise or even unnecessary conflict in life. I’m naturally averse to conflict, and have spoken up at the wrong time or in the wrong way in the past. So I developed a four question matrix to test any “prophetic truths” I may feel compelled to share.

  1. Am I communicating honestly and without hostility? My message will be best received if I take the time to process my own feelings before speaking.
  2. Am I speaking for someone or against something? It’s good to work for the rights of others, but I don’t want to oppose something for the sake of opposing it.
  3. What will I get out of saying this? If I stand to gain emotionally, financially, or any other way by speaking an uncomfortable truth, I may need to examine my motives carefully.
  4. Is this driven by social identity? If the truth I’m sharing is commonly held among people who identify themselves with labels I use to identify myself, there’s a real chance these beliefs are driven by social identity. I may need to check my sources and reasoning before speaking up.

This list is by no means exhaustive or universal–it’s just the test I apply to ideas before I tap “share.”

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