//Ya’ll. I hate this word.
It makes everything inside of me cringe.
Confrontation is probably one of the things I hate the most when it comes to relationships. I don’t like to rock the boat, hurt feelings or open up the risk for an argument to break out. If there is any way for me to opt out of confrontation, you better believe I’ll take it.
The past couple of weeks I have been reading articles, listening to podcasts and hearing stories that have all *conveniently* been about what characterizes a good friend. They listed things from encouragement to caring for one another in hardship; but one quality they really harped on was having the boldness to confront a friend where correction or a word of truth is needed. A friendship grows to new lengths when we are willing to be gut honest and bold with our friends. It shows how much we genuinely care about them and sincerely desire what’s best for them.
I slumped down in my seat as I read those words because I know I’m not really that friend. As sad as it is, I am often not a truth teller in situations like that. I’m a back scratcher and a “yes” friend.
I don’t want to be that friend anymore.//
“Wounds from a sincere friend are better than many kisses from an enemy.” Proverbs 27:6
The truth is, I have so many friends who have been willing to hurt my feelings for the sake of my well being. If it hadn’t been for their confrontation of issues in my life, I never would have recognized and forsaken very unhealthy habits.
Even in confronting somebody, it shouldn’t be done out of a spirit of “I’m right and you’re wrong.” It should be done out of love and grace while still communicating truth.
Good friends watch each other’s backs and guard their friends’ lives just as they would guard their own. This is amazing. And I want to be like that. I want to value my friends’ well being more than I do my uncomfortable feelings.
I’ve always viewed confrontation in a negative light. But maybe instead of seeing it as a hateful thing to do, I can see if for what it can be -an act of love. It can be an act of love when done with a right heart that seeks for a friend to be uplifted, not just for me to be proven “right”. Even though confronting can be uncomfortable, it can and should still be done in love, kindness, grace and respect for the other person. Because true friends are willing to wound, it might just save them from a serious injury later on.
Top Photo Credit: Christina Hubbard of Creative and Free.