Conflict is a part of most relationships. Whether the relationship is with a spouse or loved one or fellow worker, it often helps to understand why the conflict is arising. Understanding where conflicts arise sometimes helps us understand and work through conflicts. The Scriptures reveal 2 things that bring conflict. They are jealousy and selfishness.
“Where jealousy and selfishness are, there will be confusion and every kind of evil.” James 3:16 NCV
Jealousy is a constant threat to any relationship. When we believe the other person is getting a better deal or more favor it creates an atmosphere for jealousy to flourish. It begins at birth with sibling rivalry. “He got a bigger piece of pie than I”. Behind most jealousy is the fear you will do without if someone else gets favor. But the truth is that we can rejoice with those who rejoice and still believe God will bless us as well. Jealousy in marriage can come when one spouse feels his needs are not met by the other who may be spending too much time with something or someone else. Communication usually helps this type of jealousy from growing. Remember the Biblical story of Joseph in the Bible? His trouble was the result of his brothers’ jealousy over his favor with his father.
Selfishness again begins early in life. We see the world through our own eyes and it seems the only right way. Why do people fail to see your plan? Why don’t people want to help? Perhaps the question we should ask is “am I being selfish?” “Am I only looking at this situation from my perspective?” Again, communication helps to understand the whys and give us better perspective of the other person’s situation. We will be more merciful when we put ourselves in others’ shoes.
Father God, help me today to not judge others or become frustrated with them. Help me to rejoice with others who are experiencing favor. Help me to weep with those who weep. Help me be more focused on meeting the needs of others than with myself. Lord, You meet my every need.