“When we withhold our voice from the people we care about and choose not to communicate because it might be uncomfortable, we strain and break the relationship even more than if we would have faced it to begin with.”
In my last post, we talked about how withholding our voices from friends when we feel a nudge to confront them about something kills authentic connection in our lives.
“But Keira,” you say, “I don’t want to bring up every single annoyance or issue I have with a friend…that sounds exhausting and miserable!”
TRUE. That would be miserable, and not to mention unhealthy!
So, when do we address an issue and when do we let it go? Here are some questions to prayerfully reflect on before confronting someone:
Take a step back. Is there sin of yours or sin of theirs that would be helpful to bring to the light? Is this coming from a place of love? Or a place of revenge? Wait until emotions settle a little and you’ve had a chance to get perspective on it. Is it lingering? You can’t shake it? You feel it, like cats claw, bitterness finding its home and spreading within you? Address it. Right or wrong, it’s worth it.
Don’t overthink it. Sometimes it’s an easy judgement call because we know right away we are hurt. Don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself! In this instance, it’s more important to say something even if you’re emotional, than to let the moment pass you by. Trust the Spirit’s leading when he nudges you to speak.
Consider the relationship. Will this help the relationship or is it merely an annoyance? Will it be helpful for the person? Or is it purely selfish and out of personal hurts? It would be just as harmful to bring up every little thing someone does that’s annoying or hurtful. There’s a time and place to genuinely give someone the benefit of the doubt and let things go without confronting them.
If you find yourself having a hard time letting it go, but you know it’s not right to confront your friend, offer it to God. If he can give the blind sight, he surely can change the way you’re viewing the situation and bring peace to your heart.
Confronting our friends with the things that matter takes vulnerability! It takes work to discern, to give ourselves a gut check and determine our motives. It takes courage to put ourselves out there, not knowing how we will be received by the people we care about.
But it will take us into deeper, authentic, connection and build trust with those we love. It allows us to be heard and seen and known more fully in our relationships and THAT is worth it, friends.