Weekday Devotionals

Have the Tough Conversation” by Brenda Nidiffer

 “Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.”‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭4:15-16‬ ‭NLT‬

Thoughts: “Speak the truth in love” is a phrase I have heard often during my Christian journey, but to be honest haven’t seen practiced as much as it’s been said. It often goes more like “If you love the person, just sweep it under the rug.” If I’m honest with myself I tend to practice the latter because it just seems easier and more peaceful that way. But as I look back on what that has done to my heart over the years, I can reflect on past seasons of bitterness, unforgiveness, grudges, and “fake” relationships. What seemed to be the path of least resistance at the time, definitely didn’t result in peace. In fact the complete opposite occurred, leaving my thoughts distracted and heart hardened to the “truth” God was trying to speak into my heart & the situation.

God created us to live in community. As our Heavenly Father, he knows it’s not good for us to be alone. (Genesis 2:18) But guess what? Those relationships he designed us for aren’t always going to be pretty and smooth sailing due to our sin nature. We are bound to hurt & disappoint others at times. So what do we do when this occurs?

As Pastor Pete challenged us this past Sunday to pursue authenticity & accountability in our relationships, we need to “Have the Tough Conversation.” This truly is the only way to achieve growth in our relationships and to live a life of freedom from the traps the enemy will try to keep us caught up in. If we dodge it… we stew, we grow bitter, we gossip, we grow hard & cold, leading us to wander from the life of truth, health and authentic love God knows is best for our lives. We often look for greener pastures to run to where everyone gets along and there’s no conflict, until there isn’t. Things get messy and hard again, so we run, we hide and the cycle continues. This only leads to shallow relationships and a heart longing to truly be seen & loved by others. The enemy loves to keep us trapped there!

So stop the cycle, make the effort to have the tough conversation, whether it be with a friend, our spouse, our children, a family member, coworker and yes, even those we go to church with. I haven’t always followed this and still have a lot of growing to do in this area, but when I have done the hard thing, I have experienced freedom, forgiveness, encouragement, burdens lifted and authentic, genuine relationships. I’m so grateful for these true friendships I would have missed out on if the tough, awkward conversations had never happened. The very best relationships will have conflict and tough seasons, but will stand the test of time if we speak the truth in love when those hurts & hard times arise.

-Is there someone God is nudging your heart to have a “tough conversation” with today?

-Are you being honest in expressing your hurt & emotion when conflict does arise?

-Could unforgiveness or bitterness be keeping you from a life of freedom & peace?

Let’s strive to be a church that loves one another deeply & authentically!

Many Blessings,
Brenda Nidiffer 




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