Balancing Conflict & Confidence – Guest Post by Chris Rivers
Today, Chris Rivers is sharing his thoughts on balancing conflict and confidence. I connected with Chris recently to learn more about CultureBus, the new organization that he has launched “to help ministry leaders create a culture development model that helps increase their leadership pipeline and accomplish their vision”. If you need help getting your team to embrace the vision and DNA of your organization, you should check out what Chris is doing with CultureBus.
Conflict is everywhere. We all face it. Some call it opposition, others call it tension, but you can guarantee that if God’s calling you into greatness, you’re going to meet conflict. I’ve found that conflict is like a close neighbor- you are bound to run into it at some point. Conflict can trip you up, cause you to lose focus, and also forget about another neighbor that you may not have seen lately- confidence. Confidence is a very different neighbor from conflict. It is always ready to encourage and lend a hand whenever you are in need. You never want to avoid confidence, as a matter of fact, you love when it’s around.
When I think about people in the Bible who had confidence in the midst of conflict- Joseph always comes to mind. From Genesis 37-41 we watch Joseph ride a conflict rollercoaster. He was sold into slavery by his brothers, wrongfully accused of raping his boss’s wife, thrown into prison, and forgotten by someone who could have helped him. When the time comes for him to be brought before Pharaoh to interpret his dream, instead of seeing it as an opportunity to prove himself or a moment to escape his circumstances, he stands in confidence. When asked by Pharoah if he could interpret dreams, his response is: “I can’t, but God can.” Joseph found confidence in God’s abilities, not his own. He realized that God was orchestrating all his circumstances, which included conflict.
In the face of conflict a confident leader:
- responds in faith
- accuses no one
- accepts his/her circumstances
- is patient with others
- doesn’t complain
- is not afraid of the outcome
- has focus
- embraces seasons of unknown because he/she knows who makes the seasons in the first place
When we are faced with circumstances full of conflict, we have an opportunity to find confidence in God’s ability to see us through it. By embracing conflict as part of our process, and facing it head-on, we have the chance to grow our confidence in who God says He is. When you know that God stands with you, you are able to face conflict with a different mentality and strategy.
It’s not what I know, but who I know that helps me move from conflict to confidence. Focusing on my identity in Christ will lead to confidence. For those of us that call ourselves Christ followers, we should expect that while conflict is inevitable, it is an opportunity to become more confident in our identity. Conflict should always accompany confidence, because we have the help of the one who knows the end of the story.