I believe that, especially when those books have eternal value. Good Christian books have the potential to help us grow in our relationships with God and one another. They can help us understand how God might be working in our lives, help us be better witnesses to the world around us, and help us deal biblically with the tests and trials of life.
Welcome to Mondays @ Soul Survival for 2016. As many of you know, last year we went through The Jesus Code by O.S. Hawkins, chapter by chapter. This year I plan to feature a different book each week by sharing a few key concepts from each one.
Last week we looked at a great book entitled Taming the To-Do List: How to Choose Your Best Work Every Day by Glynnis Whitwer. If you deal with procrastination or an unending to-do list, you may want to check out Glynnis’ book.
Today I’d like to share some thoughts with you about a little gem of a book entitled Resolving Everyday Conflict by Ken Sande of Peacemaker Ministries. If you’re not familiar with Peacemaker Ministries you are missing some great resources.
Resolving Everyday Conflict has just 107 pages, but it’s packed full of helpful information. From the introduction:
Conflict is a normal part of life. As long as you live around other people, you’re going to find your opinions and actions bumping up against someone else’s. Sometimes you’ll be able to simply back off and go your own way. But you have probably discovered that sometimes walking away doesn’t work.
Many relationships are too important to walk away from. Some issues are too big to give in to. And some people just won’t let go until they get everything they want. Add a variety of intense emotions to the mix, and conflict can get very messy and painful.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. If you keep reading this book, you’ll discover that conflict doesn’t have to be painful or destructive. As you learn God’s ways of resolving conflict, you can approach conflict as an opportunity to make relationships closer and stronger, to find solutions that are fair for everyone, and—best of all—to please and honor God.
The principles discussed in this and other Peacemaker materials have been used to stop divorces and reconcile marriages. They have been used to settle lawsuits and work disputes. They have been used in churches, in families, and even to settle issues between warring tribes in Asia and Africa!
I routinely use their materials in my counseling ministry. When I counsel families with younger children, I often use The Young Peacemaker. It consists of a parent/teacher guide and reproducible comic type booklets for the child or children. It covers such things as: how to deal with conflict between siblings and friends, how to avoid running away from problems, the problem with going on the attack to get your way, and how to ask forgiveness biblically. It also helps kids make the connection between choices and consequences, among other things. I know a number of families who have used this as a family devotional.
One of the books I have gotten especially excited about this past year is The Peacemaker Student Edition. This one is aimed at teens and their parents. I am currently working through this book with a number of families. It covers the same principles as all the Peacemaker material in a family friendly, easy to discuss way. It’s another great family devotional book. Both of these would be good Sunday school material, as well.
Resolving Everyday Conflict covers conflict resolution and peacemaking in a short, easy to read format. Subjects include: the causes of conflict, the hope of the gospel in changing the way we deal it, the opportunities for growth and godly witness in conflict, and how to tap into God’s power to overcome it.
Ken Sande uses great diagrams like the one of “the slippery slope” to illustrate the danger of sinful responses to conflict to help readers understand and remember important principles.
Other Peacemaker materials include Sande’s original book, The Peacemaker: A Biblical Guide to Resolving Personal Conflict, Peacemaking for Families, and Peacemaking Women.
If you want to honor God when faced with conflict, any of these resources would be a great help.
What have been your experiences with conflict and resolving differences? If you have used Peacemaker resources, how have they been a help to you?
Quotations taken from:
Sande, Ken; Johnson, Kevin (2011-05-01). Resolving Everyday Conflict. Baker Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.
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