Tag: meekness

Have we lost commonsense & responsibililty?

I am an Apple fanboy. This is not about defending Apple.I am merely raising a question.

I remember years ago laughing out loud when hearing the joke “Someone sued McDonald’s because the coffee was hot.” I stopped laughing when I heard it was no joke. It seems the greatest sin these days is to inconvenience anyone. iPhone 4 is another hot cup of coffee.

Lawsuits being filed against Apple for iPhone 4 antenna issues.
Seriously!? Stores sold the iPhone 4 barely a week ago. Within the last few days people had three options: 1) Return the phone 2) Get a case 3) Hold the phone differently. Granted these options may not be convenient. But, suing Apple for a new product that sold less than a week ago is absurd.

I had two phones which had a similar issues: Samsung & Nokia. One I returned within a week, the other I just lived with. Commonsense: Don’t buy a product the first day it comes out, it normally has some flaws. Responsibility: If I violate the general rule, then I need to deal with the inconvenience of the options mentioned.

Have we lost perspective?
Nothing is perfect. We act that way though. The root of our anger and frustration towards anything inconvenient points to a bigger issue. We think the world revolves around us. Worse, we think our lives of première importance to all others. I can’t help but wonder if our sue happy culture is really shirking commonsense & responsibility. Sure, Apple could handle the mess better… Isn’t that thought another form of shirking commonsense & responsibility? “They’re not doing their job right, so I’m ok in how I am…” Frustrating times speak volumes about us and the state of our soul.

Humility, meekness, servant-hood
Humility, meekness and servant-hood are three things our culture could benefit from. Because we ‘can’ do something doesn’t mean we always ‘should.’ Sometimes the prudent thing is to not act on our rights. In all cases we should use commonsense & responsibility. Suing Apple barely a week after a new product coming out is like suing McDonald’s for their coffee being hot. It would be an interesting study to see the economic cost of shirking commonsense & responsibility.  I’m sure the health-care world would have some thoughts on this.

The Bottom line
There is a nasty trend in our culture that needs to change. I am sure there are many more dynamics to the iPhone 4 issue, but those dynamics do not negate our response to that situation or any other. Whether fair or not, warranted or not; we are responsible for our actions & attitudes.  The soul is selfish and loves to blame others, shirking its responsibility for its own lack of commonsense.

Conflict Part 1: Carefront or Confront?

Few people like conflict. It makes us feel uneasy, uncomfortable, nervous, scared. Conflict ranks just below teaching the Bible and prayer in top ministry activities. This week we will be looking at some principles related to conflict and how to manage it. Today, we will look at Carefronting vs Confronting. This addresses the mindset we have in conflict.

The difference
Carefronting:
Goal: Reconciliation
Focus: Loving the person
Attitude: Humility or concern
Approach: Demonstrates concern for the person, seeks understanding

Confronting:
Goal: Justice
Focus: Changing the person
Attitude: Anger or pride
Approach: Demonstrates concern for the issue, seeks retribution

What carefronting is not
Carefronting is not the absence of: anger, the need for change, justice or frustration. Those things are natural to conflict. Carefronting does not mean one is a softy or a push over. Carefronting does not mean sweeping something under the rug.

We really want payback
We love angry tirades! Let’s admit it: Jesus clearing the temple or chastising the Pharisees seems exciting to us. We love the emotional release of anger and vengeance. After all, the Bible instructs us to be separate, be holy, be pure. The Bible has a word for that approach from His own: arrogance. “Vengeance is mine, says the LORD.” The struggle of conflict is the dark side of our soul. We want payback, God wants reconciliation. Take a minute to read 1 Corinthians 13. Circle the words that relate to conflict. Does payback fit love? Does our thirst for the emotional release of anger and vengeance fit this passage? Carefronting is demonstrating love. Love is hard!

Carefronting is meekness
Power under control defines meekness. Example: God sent Jesus as payment for our sin. He could have easily killed off the human population like He did in the flood. God has the power to do that. God instead took the John 3:16 approach. That is meekness. Carefronting is approaching the problem with the goal of restoration.

Seeds not Redwoods
Seeds are small and powerless. Redwoods are massive, with deep roots, and will likely cause damage when they fall.

Carefronting best starts before something becomes an issue (the seed). Conflicts explode because we often do not want to take action early before something is a problem. If you hate conflict, deal with things early and you will avoid many, but you will never avoid all.  To deal with seeds means we need to get over ourselves. Carefronting starts with care. If we truly love and care about someone, we start early, not later.

Bottom line:
Carefronting is speaking the truth in love. Carefronting is bearing one another’s burdens. Look at Carefronting vs Confronting again. If you are in a conflict, which mindset are you pursuing? Carefronting is about living Ephesians 4:32:

“Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.”