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Friday, March 29, 2013

When Relatives Don't Listen

No matter what anyone says, some relatives just won't listen to sound advice!  They will cry, scream, threaten, and even run away from truth.  They ignore warnings, fight with family members, make excuses, ignore phone calls, and even lie to keep from the following occuring:  exposed on a wrong,  told to do the right thing like pay back what they owe, advise on handling problematic relationships/friendships, and whatever else they are supposed to do or not do.

"I don't bother with Mom because...I can't stand my sister because...If I were you, I would stay out of my business...Who do you think you are telling me...?"  says the stiff-necked, angry person.  He or she is often defending why he/she/it is right and why what this person does or doesn't do is okay, alright and "don't worry about me."  The offended, who doesn't like truth, especially with a Christian ring to it, is going to push back.  If you are the one, who has to speak truth to a rebellious person, here's what to do:

1.  Prepare your speech and know what you are going to do if there is no change in the offending behavior(s).

2.  Use your faith to keep you focused ie.) pray in your mind before, during and after confrontation.

3.  Demonstrate self-control.  Don't argue or act like a fool because you don't like what the person is saying to you.

4.  Be a blessing, offer assistance and then follow up.  It wouldn't be fair to tell someone what they should do and you are not willing to help.

5.  Don't bad-mouth.  It isn't necessary to share your encounter with someone else particularly if you feel tempted to say every vile thing you can about this person.

6.  Stay away from an angry man or woman.  If you already know this person has threatened to harm you, don't go near him or her.  Use the phone, computer or a third party.

7.  Forgive your enemy without being difficult, evil, or temperamental.

After you have done what you can to help your stubborn relative, back off!  Don't continue to speak to this person about what is bothering you ie.) "I feel...you make me...I wish..."  If he or she is willing to reach a compromise, you will see fresh fruit, so to speak, if not, don't hang around spoiled fruit. 

Most people are aware that their actions and in-actions on a matter is why negativity has showed up in their lives.  The problem for some people is it is easier to ignore issues and hope that they go away.  But when tough love comes into play and no one is inviting The Problem to the family event, calling him or her often, asking this person to do anything for him or her, and overall acting differently toward the troubled person, sooner or later he or she will see that the family doesn't accept his or her behavior.  It is then that the person will have to make a choice either, do what's right or not.  Your Creator treats Christ believers the same way.  A believer defends his or herself when He uses his messengers to get a person who claims to be a child of God to act on His will.  In time, God distances himself from the rebellious.  Take the time to confess your sins, repent, and ask the Lord to forgive you, then forgive those who have offended you in Jesus name.

Nicholl McGuire

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