story from the field

do you understand?

Submitted by Keith Yoder, Founder, TTWM


One of the privileges we have at TTWM is to witness the Spirit of God empower persons to experience reconciliation and restoration. In recent weeks there have been several instances in which conflicts were resolved.  We understand conflict to be emotional tension over differences in goals, needs, desires, hopes and the way one takes to fulfill them.

As we facilitate conversations in an ordered manner, perceptions are tested and reshaped or the reasons for the actions of others become clear.  Expectations are clarified and/or negotiated. Sins are acknowledged and forgiven.

Peace is made when teachers and parents, husband and wife, and congregational leaders find points of shared understanding. Judgments are released when each party understands the intention, perspective, and values of the other.

Over and over we observe that understanding is a key to resolve conflict. Persons need to know, “Do you understand?” That is to say, “Can you “stand under” the perspective I have and see it from my point of view?” “Will you come and stand with me and see it the way I see it?” 

When these questions are answered in the affirmative, mutual understanding is built. Both parties are valued. In all of this Christ is honored as His attitude prevails. Apostle Paul put it this way: 

Do not merely look out for your own personal interests,
but also for the interests of others.

-Philippians 2:4 NASB