I am a better writer than I am a speaker and when it comes to conflict, I am horrible at verbalizing my thoughts. Therefore, I usually just listen to a person and when I am ready to give a response I usually do it through a note. It's not the best way to resolve an issue, but I've found that if I take the time to think about the issue, pray over it, and write out my thoughts with a calm and trusting spirit, the issue is resolved with Christ-likeness and there is usually restoration.
As a follow up to my previous post, The Clashing of 2 Cultures or Making a Bigger Deal Out of Nothing?, I returned the thank you note to my friend and I also enclosed another note thanking my friend again and explaining where I thought the misunderstanding of the money came from. However, before writing and sending that note, I did several things.
First, I discussed the idea with my husband. I wanted to make sure that I was doing the right thing and that my heart was coming from the right place. I told DearHubby what I wanted to put in the letter and after hearing my thoughts, he was ok with the idea.
Second, I asked DearHubby to pray for the right words.
Third, I prayed for the right words. As I sat down to write the note, I asked the Lord to keep my heart pure and that the words I write on the paper would be words enlightened by Him and not out of my flesh.
Fourth, I read the note to DearHubby when I was done. DearHubby found the note OK except for one section. He asked me to remove the section he didn't like because it sounded like I was again trying to cause conflict and the note was to cause resolution and restoration. The section was not necessary to the explanation of the misunderstanding and I agreed with DearHubby and removed it.
Fifth, I prayed for my friend so that when she received and read the note that she would see only Christ's love and my intent for resolution and restoration.
Well, I gave the note to my friend. She read it, we had a brief discussion about it, and the conflict was resolved. She had nothing more to say about the issue and I said everything I needed to and the issue is now forgotten. There were no apologies said because there really was no sin committed against one another, just a mere misunderstanding, and that misunderstanding was cleared up.
Although my feelings were hurt by the way my friend returned the money and thank you note at church, I decided not to let my friend know of my hurt feelings and to let that go. Though my feelings were hurt, there was nothing my friend did that was really sinful that needed any sort of reproof and I decided that this was one of those issues where I should have a gentle and quiet spirit over.