Who is of God
He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore, you do not hear, because you are not of God.” John 8:47
How do you view conflict. Is it a bad or a good thing? I have to admit that even though I have been good at it in a professional setting, I try to avoid it when it comes to personal matters. Especially in my closest relationships. However, recently I have had a breakthrough in this area in a positive way. Conflict or confronting differences can actually be an opportunity to grow in your personal character, as well as in your relationships with those you love. I have always viewed conflict as fighting instead of merely bringing two different opinions together. Ideally, two opposing perspectives can make for an entirely new solution that could not have been reached without the different points of view.
In today’s reading, what looks like a bad situation between Jesus and the Jews, is actually an opportunity for those listening to learn about who Jesus really was and grow in knowing Him more. In the conflict and even argument they were having, Jesus was able to clearly explain that He came only to do what He had seen and heard from His Father.
This conflict and the many others He had during His time was an opportunity for Him to not only teach, but also to love on the people who were being ignored and oppressed by the very leaders that were supposed to be caring for God’s people. I have struggled in times past with these passages because I didn’t understand why Jesus would argue with those, He would never be able to convert to believing in Him. Through it all, He was able to give us an example of handling conflict with grace and humility and at the same time letting people know that our heavenly Father loves us so much more than just wanting us to keep a set of rules.
Today, I want to encourage you to take a new perspective on conflict. See it as an opportunity for something new and even better to emerge. Don’t fight your way through a difference of opinion. Instead look for ways to bring ideas together to reach a solution for the future that will make the environment you are in a better place to be. Follow Jesus’ example and consider who will be impacted by your conflicts and then use them as opportunities to let other people know just how great your heavenly Father is and how much He love those who would pursue Him.
Today’s scripture reading: John 8:37-47
37 “I know that you are Abraham’s descendants, but you seek to kill Me, because My word has no place in you.
38 I speak what I have seen with My Father, and you do what you have seen with your father.”
39 They answered and said to Him, “Abraham is our father.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would do the works of Abraham.
40 But now you seek to kill Me, a Man who has told you the truth which I heard from God. Abraham did not do this.
41 You do the deeds of your father.” Then they said to Him, “We were not born of fornication; we have one Father—God.”
42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me.
43 Why do you not understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word.
44 You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.
45 But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me.
46 Which of you convicts Me of sin? And if I tell the truth, why do you not believe Me?
47 He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God.”