Acting As God’s Peacemakers
“I plead with Euodia and I plead with Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord.” Philippians 4:2
Years ago, a friend shared a string of “offenses” over coffee, those she felt proved certain individuals didn’t love her. Listening, clarity surfaced. Past hurts had distorted her perceptions and caused her to assume rejection that didn’t exist.
I could’ve spoken truth in that moment, asking probing questions to help her analyze the situation more thoroughly. I should’ve prayerfully pointed her to Jesus, encouraging her to invite Him to search her heart, remove her misconceptions and deceptions, and ground her truth.
Instead, I just listened, and the relationship remained broken. She remained hurt—and largely from misinterpreted non-offenses. Love can be a tricky, confusing thing. We want to comfort and support our friends, but love without truth is destructive. We may not always know what to say in certain situations, but we always know Who to point our friends to. Only Jesus holds perfect wisdom and insight for every situation, a wisdom He willingly shares with all who ask.
Paul, the author who wrote today’s verse, could’ve ignored whatever drama arose between these two women. He could’ve assumed he was too busy to address relational conflict in one of the many churches he planted. But he didn’t. Instead, he encouraged the Philippian believers to come alongside their hurting sisters, to act as peacemakers, helping these women draw closer together and closer to Christ.
We need to be there for our friends, certainly. But we must always remember, they need Jesus more, during their moments of conflict especially. When we feel ill-equipped to help, may we point our loved ones to the God who’s always present, faithful and true. And when we’re tempted to walk away, to distance ourselves, may we remember that God wants us to act as peacemakers. That doesn’t mean we become entrenched in someone else’s drama nor that we absorb dysfunction. But it does mean we speak truth and continually direct others to the God who always is True.
Jennifer Slattery is a writer, podcast host, speaker, and the founder of Wholly Loved Ministries. She writes for Crosswalk, iBelieve is a multi-published author of Building a Family among other titles who also writes articles, Bible studies, and devotions. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall outings with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband. Visit her online at jenniferslatterylivesoutloud.com or book her for your next women’s event.
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