“Can I be completely honest with you,” my friend asked me one evening as we lounged together. These words have become comfortingly familiar. She is a woman whose friendship has become a source of life and strength. I often walk away from our times together challenged, encouraged, inspired or motivated.
At my invitation, she tactfully and with great sensitivity spoke words so true and razor sharp that they cut away a few misconceptions and some incorrect thinking that had been blocking me from a breakthrough I was desperately in need of. She proceeded to delicately reveal patches of my heart that I’d been blind to – or maybe vaguely aware of but unable to reach. Like trying to see the cowlick on the back of my head but never being able to angle two mirrors in the right directions.
I’ve come to cherish these confrontations. I don’t enjoy them all the time, but they have become like a really tough workout, painful and challenging to work through but so rewarding in the end. And, in fact, this kind of confrontation has become such a lifeline in my daily life as a wife, mommy, daughter, sister and friend, that I recently realized I have been surrounding myself with people who aren’t afraid to speak the harder things, and take this king of risk in our relationship.
What I admire most, and find so attractive, is that the people I have surrounded myself with seek out the same character and quality in their relationships – they receive words of correction, invite confrontation, as often or more often, as they engage in giving them.
One thing I have learned about confrontation is that there are two truths. There is my truth – what is true to me, according to my understanding and experiences, my perspectives and prejudices. Then there is Truth, which brings freedom and is true regardless of what I understand or experience.
A major element of Truth, that which brings freedom, is love. The kind of love that is patient, kind, full of mercy, long-suffering, impartial, looks out for the needs and feelings of others before self, is discrete, is loyal, will protect and persevere and will never fail. The kind of love that isn’t human nature; the kind of love that is God’s nature.
When this kind of love is present with the Truth that sets us free, confrontation is a miracle of birthing life, setting captives free, bring sight to blind eyes and healing all kinds of diseases of the heart…
Confrontation in this form is an interaction between two people that reflects intimacy, trust and hope.
“Confrontation is an examination. It is a procedure that trusts another to look at some part of your life that you may not know about or understand. Healthy confrontation is necessary if we expect to build healthy lives and live in peace.” #Cultureofhonor
If fear is part of a relationship you are in, than confrontation will be a very vulnerable and risky place to be, and if the person who is confronting you has fear inside them, the confrontation is susceptible to becoming a conflict, with misunderstanding and misconstrued concepts of feelings, agendas and purpose. Fear-filled confrontation is not a place I want to be – but it is a place I’ve been… many times!
However, confrontation and the life it unleashes is very worthwhile – worth the risk, and worth renovating any place inside that is decorated with fear and becoming filled with love – God’s nature.