"Settle matters quickly with your adversary who is taking you to court. Do it while you are still together on the way, or your adversary may hand you over to the judge, and the judge may hand you over to the officer, and you may be thrown into prison." Matthew 5:25
As of yesterday, six weeks after the Detroit Free Press Marathon, it was reported that thousands of runners had still not received their race shirts. In a statement issued by race officials, they said "they didn't pace themselves when they said the shirts would be delivered to their homes by Thanksgiving" and are now promising to get roughly 27,000 shirts in the mail by December 6. While this could have been disastrous for retaining runners for next years' event, the directors handled the conflict well by admitting their mistake quickly, apologizing and working feverishly to rectify it the best they could.
And when it comes to conflicts in our own lives, that's the same approach that you and I should take. Matthew knew that as well when he advised us to, "settle matters quickly" to avoid any dispute or quarrel from escalating. And while we may not have those types of conflicts that will take us to court or land us in prison, it is always wise to resolve our differences with one another to prevent any anger, animosity or hurt feelings from arising that could cause more trouble. In other words, it's easier to mend a small problem than fix a large one.
So when troubles abound, and they will, may you and I be quick to admit our mistakes, apologize and do everything we can to settle the matter quickly. And that, my friend, will not only keep the situation from escalating but will be a model of Christ-likeness for others to imitate.
Heavenly Father, thank you for your Word that gives us the most effective form of conflict resolution. May we work to the best of our ability to create and maintain peace at all times and in all situations. And as we do, may others see You in each one of us. It's in your precious name we pray, Jesus. Amen.
33 Miles - Apologize