Stress = growth

Mark Batterson talks about tension:

Tension is such a healthy thing if it is handled correctly. I think conflict is like a growth stimulus. Relational steroids.

I honestly believe that truth is found in the tension of opposites. That is a linchpin in my theology. Job 11:6 says, “True wisdom has two sides.” We are too content with one-dimensional truth. But true wisdom is typically found on the far side of tension.

Too often we run away from conflict, but I’ve found that conflict will actually bring you closer together if you handle it right. Tension not only keeps our relationships from becoming superficial. Tension forces us to talk about things we should be talking about but don’t want to talk about. Conflict has a way of taking us to a new level relationally and organizationally.”

He’s talking about it from a work/staff perspective, but I think it applies elsewhere as well. Grete and I were talking to some friends last night about that exciting first year of marriage. Our’s was great, but you still learn a lot. Let’s just put it this way: it’s amazing how much you can learn about yourself through conflict. When handled correctly, though, it can really help you grow.

“Wisdom has two sides.” There’s really never a situation where one person is completely at fault. On those extremely rare occasions when Grete and I argue, I’m good at keeping that fact in mind. Problem is, it’s usually in the form of, “I know I’m wrong, but she is too!” 🙂

If I’m learning anything, it’s that conflict is resolved in the healthiest way when we talk it out and I focus on how I can grow more than on what she needs to learn. Andy Stanley put it well in a sermon on marriage. He said you didn’t get into marriage to train and grow that other person. He or she already has parents. I’m here to love my spouse, not parent her!

“I think most staff problems trace back to someone internalizing something they should have verbalized. And it results in high levels of pent up frustration and bad morale. Here is a great rule of thumb: don’t internalize. Verbalize.”

Well said, Mark. Well said.

One response to “Stress = growth”

  1. i’ve said a few times that you can’t really be close friends if you haven’t had a few conflicts.

    conflicts often come w/ honesty…yikes!

    thanks for being a close friend 🙂

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