The Right Focus
"Kind words are like honey—sweet to the soul and healthy for the body." Proverbs 16:24 NLT
Thoughts for Today
Yesterday we discussed speaking the truth in love. Author David Augsburger expands on this thought by suggesting a creative way to deal with conflict that he calls "carefronting."
When in conflict, there are ways to confront your spouse in love without being judgmental. One such way is to focus your feedback on the action, not on the actor. This gives your spouse the freedom to change the behavior without feeling personal rejection.
It's also good to focus your feedback on your observations, not on your conclusions. Don't comment on what you think or imagine, but on what you have actually seen or heard. You are less likely to put your spouse on the defensive.
Focus your feedback not on why, but on what and how. Why critiques values, motives and intents. Why is judgmental, but what and how relate to observable actions, behaviors, words and tone of voice.
Consider this …
Carefronting should be done caringly, gently, constructively and clearly—not with put-downs and condemnation. Jesus set the example in the way he approached people during his ministry here on earth. Ask him to help you. He will teach you to speak the truth in love.
Father, please forgive me for the times I've responded to my spouse in anger, speaking harshly and putting him (her) down. Help me to respond caringly, gently, constructively and clearly. Teach me to speak the truth in love. In Jesus' name …
These thoughts were drawn from …
Committed Couples: God's Plan for Marriage & the Family by Dr. Jimmy Ray Lee. Whether in a private or group setting, couples will be encouraged spiritually and romantically as they research biblical principles that affirm their vows. This book can help every married couple grow spiritually and emotionally in their relationship. It is also a great help for engaged-to-be-married couples.
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