Scripture Focus: But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. James 3:17
I once observed a long-term married couple who had a particular pattern when fighting. This was a good marriage, a strong union, and both persons were believers. Yet when these two people fought, I could see an unhelpful pattern in their interaction.
The wife of this couple tended to retreat in times of extreme tension. She needed to walk away, think clearly, pray for a while, and get her space. After some time away she would come back refreshed, balanced, and ready to work through the issues.
Meanwhile the husband of this couple insisted on immediate resolution of whatever issue was being discussed. He could not live with unresolved tension so he insisted that the couple “have it out” right then and right there. Going away to think about things was not an option. The time to solve problems wasn’t later, it was right now!
As a neutral observer and an outside party, I could see this pattern quite clearly. I could see how and where it was wrong. The solution was simple, easy, and obvious.
Imagine my surprise when God placed a mirror in my own home. One day I was interacting with my own wife, a godly woman who is often wiser than I am. We disagreed about something; my wife needed time and space to think for a while.
Not me! What I needed was resolution of the problem between us -- right now. I couldn’t stand to have any unresolved tension between us. In my view, we needed to resolve the problem right now! Just at that moment, God held up a mirror and I looked clearly at my own reflection. I was a hypocrite. The same behavior that I criticized and corrected in others, I was now guilty of, myself. Imagine that!
For your personal reflection: