Are You Communicating?

I have this magical gift.  It’s called being an INFJ.  People intuitively feel comfortable around me and without any solicitaion start sharing what’s going on in their lives.  Seriously, it happens in public with strangers all the time.  I need to write about one of my gas station visits in Nashville.  Scary.

It’s quite a dichotomy because I either hear people are initially intimidated by me or people start sharing their deepest darkest secrets with me.

Anyway, I’ve seen a trend in people sharing honestly how they feel about a situation.  They will go into detail on how someone else’s actions have made them feel.  But when I ask if they’ve shared how they feel with the other person, the answer is most usually, no.

I was reading Total Truth today and highlighted this quote on page 132.  “… certain virtues necessary for spiritual maturity-such as faithfulness and self sacrificing love – can be practiced ONLY within relationships.”

I get frustrated at how people drive.  Driving into Clarksville today, in the pouring down rain, I got frustrated that people were driving without their headlights on.  The more I drive the more I realize people are not intentionally driving ignorantly, they are just so wrapped up in their own world that they aren’t thinking about anything else.  That’s reality.  That’s people.  People are wrapped up inside their own heads that they have no clue how their actions are affecting others.

And that’s where we come in.  It’s our responsibility when people are doing hurtful things to lovingly share that reality with them.  Take your hurt to God first and see what He has to say about it.  Examine yourself next.  And then maybe it’s time to be a light in someones life.

“Hey, ya know the other day when you said this?  Or acted like that?  That really hurt.  Can you tell me what’s going on that would cause you to behave that way?”

Confrontation is not easy.  But healthy confrontation, in love and honor is a beautiful thing.

Never confronting leads to avoidance.  And avoidance leads to even further miscommunication and breakdown of relationship.  Not a healthy place for any relationship.

People are unaware of how their actions and behavior is destructive to those around them.  By coming to them with your legitimate hurt you might be the cause for a light bulb to go on in their head, and hopefully save them and others from further damage.

We don’t confront out of fear.  Fear of how the person will react when confronted.  Or fear that when we’ve done the hard emotional work of sharing our hurt, nothing will change.

I think I’ve posted this quote by Colin Powell before but it’s a good one:

“The day the soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you stopped leading them. They have either lost confidence that you can help them or concluded that you do not care. Either case is a failure of leadership.”

Who do you need to lovingly confront?

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