Wise People Consider Other People’s Feelings
By Rick Warren
“The wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.” James 3:17 (NIV)
Do you know two of the biggest mistakes people make in relationships? One, they react to what someone says without considering how that person feels. Two, they invalidate someone’s feelings because they don’t feel that way themselves.
The antidote for both of these is the same: Simply be considerate.
Let’s take a closer look at each of these mistakes and what you can do instead.
Mistake #1: Reacting without trying to understand.
People often pay too much attention to someone’s words and not enough attention to the emotions behind the words. When a person is angry, they often say things they don’t mean. They exaggerate and use words they didn’t intend to use. Instead of just listening to the words, look for the emotions behind the words. People don’t always say what they mean—but they always feel what they feel.
If you’re wise in relationships, you’ll be considerate of feelings. Don’t just focus on what your kid, spouse, neighbor, or boss says—words that may trigger your anger. Instead, be mindful of what those people may be feeling. When people are rude and unkind, they are screaming to the world, “I’m in pain!” Hurt people always hurt people. And it’s actually the unkind people who need your kindness the most.
Mistake #2: Invalidating any feelings that you don’t feel yourself.
When you don’t feel the same emotion someone else feels, you may dismiss their feelings altogether. Let me ask you this: Can one person be cold and another be warm while being in the same room at the same time? Yes. So why try to argue people out of what they feel?
When you dismiss someone’s feelings, you minimize the other person. Someone may say to you, “I feel stupid.” Don’t just dismiss it by saying, “You’re not stupid.” Instead, say, “Why do you feel that way? What makes you say that?” You need to look beyond the words and get to the real issue.
Feelings are neither right nor wrong. They’re just there. No one has to defend their feelings. They just need you to say, “I hear you.”
With heaven’s wisdom, you can stop ignoring and invalidating other people’s feelings. You can let your friend feel tired and not try to talk her out of it. You can let your spouse feel sad and not try to talk him out of it. Wise people are considerate of other people’s feelings.
For more Daily Hope with Rick Warren, please visit pastorrick.com!
Every single one of us struggles with some sort of nagging hurt, hang-up, or habit. But you have a powerful source of truth that can lead you from heartache to healing—God’s Word!
Discover how the truth of Scripture can help you break free from struggles and heal from wounds with the brand-new, Life’s Healing Choices Scripture box.
This unique, vegan leather box, filled with a beautiful, 52-card set of key verses from Pastor Rick’s Life’s Healing Choices teaching series, will help you find hope and healing—and it’s our thanks for your gift below to help get the life-changing truth of Scripture out to more people around the world.
Thank you for your generosity, and may you experience healing from your hurts, hang-ups, and habits as your fill your heart and mind with God’s Word!
*The USA IRS code permits you to deduct the amount of your financial gift to Daily Hope that exceeds the fair market value of materials you received from Daily Hope.
This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
You can listen to Rick Warren on OnePlace.com.