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Biblical Principles For Communication

(Write some of these verses on cards and memorize them so that God can use them when you get into a disagreement or feel angry.)

    1. Do a heart check: Am I in submission to the lordship of Christ (1Pet. 3:15)? I must please Him with my thoughts, words, and deeds (Col. 1:10). The goal is not to win an argument, but to seek reconciliation and the building up of the other person (1 Pet. 3:11; Rom. 12:18; 14:19).
    2. Control your anger (you can do it, since God commands it!). Your anger does not accomplish God’s righteousness (James 1:20). You can express disagreement or differences without yelling, quarreling, and other expressions of anger (Eph. 4:26, 31; Prov. 14:29; 15:1; 16:32; 17:14; 17:27; 18:19; 20:3; 25:15; 25:28; 29:11). Don’t nag or be contentious (Prov.19:13b; 21:9, 19; 27:15). Attack the problem, not the person.
    3. First make sure you understand the other person by being a good listener(James 1:19; Prov. 18:13). Husbands must live with their wives “according to knowledge” (1 Pet. 3:7). This means understanding emotions as well as words. Hold your tongue and ask questions to make sure you understand (Prov. 12:18; 15:28; 21:23; 29:20).
    4. Examine yourself and confess your own sins rather than blaming or attacking the other person (Matt. 7:1, 5; Gen. 3:12-13). Especially confront any selfishness or pride (Phil. 2:3-4). If you are wrong, seek God’s forgiveness and the forgiveness of the one you wronged (1 John 1:9; James 5:16).
    5. If the other person asks your forgiveness, grant it freely (Eph. 4: 32; Matt. 6:12, 14-15; 18:21-25). Forgiveness means putting the wrong behind you and rooting out all bitterness (Col. 3:12-13; Heb. 12:14-15; 1 Pet. 4:8). Love doesn’t keep score (1 Cor. 13:5).
    6. If you must confront, make sure your motives and words are right before God (Gal. 6:1; 1 Thess. 5:14-15; 2 Tim. 2:24-26).
    7. Speak the truth, but always in love (Eph. 4:15, 25, 29). Exaggeration (“you always,” “you never”) and denying feelings are not truthful. Blasting the other person because “that’s just how I feel” is not loving (Col. 3:8, 9, 12-15; 1 Cor. 13:4-8.)
    8. If the other person verbally attacks, criticizes, blames, or belittles you, do not respond in the same manner or seek revenge. Rather, seek to bless and build up the other person through kind words and actions (1 Pet. 3:8-12; Rom. 12:17-21).
    9. Regard the other person’s needs and interests above your own (Phil. 2:3-8). Humbly ask for the other person’s prayers and help in your areas of weakness (James 5:16).
    10. Remember, it’s God’s job to change the other person; your job is to love him or her (1 Cor. 13:4-8; Eph. 5:2; John 13:34) and to work on areas where you need to change (Matt. 7:5).


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