The enemy tries to get in the way and to destroy our relationships with others.

Proverbs 12:18 There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health.

A sword pierces or hurts but wisdom makes what we say bring health. We all have raw spots from past experiences in our relationships. People in the same family will have different individual experiences. When we have a similar experience, raw spots are touched but with an entirely different person. For example, a family member said things in the past that really hurt us. When someone says something similar, the raw spot is triggered and we have a negative response. When this happens you’re no longer present with the person, but your response is based back in the previous experience. Being triggered can be confusing to the one that is triggered and to the one responded to. We may make inaccurate first drafts to explain what’s happening. It’s important to be aware if misunderstandings are based on an inaccurate story or explanation of situations. We need to work on waiting about making decisions based on our first draft. If you take the first draft as absolute, you’ll keep having problems. The enemy wants us to make snap decisions so he gets in the way of relationships. Triggers will cause us to be flooded with strong feelings that confuse us if we don’t resolve trauma memories stored in our mid brain. When we’re triggered by the same thing, we can examine what is happening by the ARE method.

A: available or willing to try, R: responsible, E: engaging to solve a problem

Proverbs 16:17-21 The highway of the upright is to depart from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul. Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud. He that handleth a matter wisely shall find good: and whoso trusteth in the Lord, happy is he. The wise in heart shall be called prudent: and the sweetness of the lips increaseth learning.

Pride gets in the way of solving problems. Our relationship with God will help us handle things in a humble way.

Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.

Without God, people in pride want to be right so they defend and blame. Using “defend and blame” to solve conflict goes in a circle and nothing gets resolved. No one feels good after going through a situation by defending and blaming. We can’t be score keepers – “I always take out the trash!” We need to show kindness, generosity, and respect in our actions.

Proverbs 16:32 He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.

Early attachment wounds will cause us to be hypersensitive. The wounds can be processed and cleared out though. These wounds can cause disagreements to be hard to deal with. We were forgiven and we need to practice forgiveness.

Ephesians 4:31-32 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God…hath forgiven you.

Jesus sacrificed when he’d nothing wrong. We need to sacrifice our need to be right. We can be humble and vulnerable, to not let the enemy destroy our relationships. There’ll be times when you’re the strong one and understand what’s going on. You can be strong for the other one in the relationship. We submit to others in fear or respect for God.

Ephesians 5:1-2 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.

The enemies job is to mess up our relationships and to discourage us. Raw spots and rocky moments will happen. Two people have two different experiences and it makes them react according to those experiences. Often problems aren’t about current moments but about things in the past. We can plan how to handle situations by being AWARE.

A: Am I part of the problem?

W: What can I do different?

A: Am I listening (or just waiting for the other to finish)?

R: React with kindness.

E: Expect a ripple effect. (Those around us will benefit by our new way of reacting.)


(Notes from the Mature Class Bible Study, teacher Helene Goble)