I ran into a conflict buzz saw a few days ago. When a touchy subject came up, a friend weighed in with her disgust. When she finished, no one else said a word. But we were silent not because we all agreed or disagreed, but because we were overwhelmed.
I remembered back to when I ran into my first conflict buzz saw. My grandma assured me that conflict was nothing to be afraid of, but instead a process in life that produces something new. Her example was making a cake. “Eggs and sugar and flour in a bowl together are not a cake,” she said. “They’ve got to have a little conflict and get knocked around until that they decide to work together and blend into batter.”
Instead of conflict being a process that we go through to grow and move forward, it has become a sport where sides just shout out their opinions and hold on to them. No one wants to make a cake.
Our children are watching these tantrums so I ask: How can we reverse direction on how we handle conflict?
This message is an excerpt from an October 2009 Women of the ELCA blog by Valora K. Starr. Today we remember Joseph, Guardian of Jesus (transferred).