Solomon was widely known for his wisdom (1 Kings 4:30, 10:24). Today he is considered by many to be among the wisest to ever live. His writings include the book of Proverbs. What does the book of Proverbs say about dealing with difficult people?
Five actions you can and should take.
1.Try To Avoid Useless Conflict~“Go from the presence of a foolish man, when you do not perceive in him the lips of knowledge” (Proverbs 14:7). “He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets; therefore do not associate with one who flatters with his lips” (20:19).
2.When Unavoidable Deal With It Quickly~ “The beginning of strife is like releasing water; therefore stop contention before a quarrel starts” (Proverbs 17:14). “He who passes by and meddles in a quarrel not his own is like one who takes a dog by the ears” (26:17).
3.Don’t You Be Difficult With Them~ “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger” (Proverbs 15:1). “The discretion of a man makes him slow to anger, and his glory is to overlook a transgression” (19:11). “Do not answer a fool according to his folly, lest you also be like him” (26:4).
4.Keep Your Cool—Don’t You Lose It~ “Whoever has no rule over his own spirit is like a city broken down, without walls” (Proverbs 25:28). “A fool vents all his feelings,but a wise man holds them back” (29:11).
5.Do Not Seek Retaliation~ “Do not say, ‘I will do to him just as he has done to me;I will render to the man according to his work’” (Proverbs 24:29). “If your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink; for so you will heap coals of fire on his head, and the Lord will reward you” (25:21-22).
If you act according the these five principles you will be exemplifying Christian Character.
Finally recognize that difficult people are God’s problem and He will deal with them in His way and in His time. Sometimes tough love is required and you must commit the person into God’s hand which may require that they learn the hard way:
Let Them Learn the Hard Way~ “A man of great wrath will suffer punishment; for if you rescue him, you will have to do it again” (Proverbs 19:19).
additional comment:The book of Proverbs contains 31 relatively short chapters.Many have found reading a chapter a day (corresponding to the date of the current month) has greatly increased their wisdom.
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