Save The Relationship And Flip A Coin
Posted: Saturday, July 6
1 Chronicles 2:18-4:4
Verse of the day:
Flipping a coin can end arguments; it settles disputes between powerful opponents.
Proverbs 18:18 (NLT)
The idea of simply flipping a coin to end a serious dispute seems very unrealistic, and even laughable. Yet, I think there is a basic idea Solomon presented that is applicable to all our relationships. So before you flip a coin to handle that argument between you and your friend about that appliance that was borrowed and then broken, consider it is less important how you settle a dispute than it is to actually settle the dispute.
In other sections of Proverbs, Solomon indicates our relationships should take priority over winning a debate or getting even. He says that overlooking wrongs (Prov. 19:11) and avoiding a fight (Prov. 20:3) are wise practices. Notice Solomon doesn’t say we should spend lots of time fighting for what we think is fair or working to make everyone happy. To solve some disputes, we have to be willing to sacrifice more of our pride and money than the other person. At the end of the day, what value is there in winning a dispute if it costs us an important relationship? Even if the dispute is with someone we’re not close with, why make enemies or burn bridges? Jesus takes this idea even further in Matthew 5:40:
If you are sued in court and your shirt is taken from you, give your coat, too.
God is always pleased when we prioritize people around us over anything else we may have to gain. Thus, the methods and results of the resolution are inconsequential compared to the value of a preserved relationship.
Disclaimer: I must give a shout out to my lovely wife Sarah Peppers for providing the insight needed to prepare this devotion. Thanks for helping me see the deeper meaning behind this passage!