Monday, May 13, 2024

Contentious People


By Andrea Merrell

Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments,

because you know they produce quarrels.

2 Timothy 2:23 NIV

“There she goes again—off into the atmosphere like a bottle rocket. You never know where she’s going to land or who’s going to get burned,” someone said as they backed away.

The woman was trouble looking for a place to happen. A know-it-all. A one-upper. Labels placed on her by those she had verbally attacked. Those who avoided her whenever possible. She was what Proverbs calls a contentious woman. Argumentative and always trying to provoke others. Wanting to be in control of every situation and prove she knew more than anyone else.

To be honest, I joined the ranks of those who avoided her. Then one day I felt a strange sense of compassion for her and wondered if I was doing the wrong thing. I asked the Lord to show me, and He led me to 2 Timothy 2:23 where Paul said:

Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone.

Being contentious pushes others away and keeps the Fruit of the Spirit from growing and manifesting in our lives. The Word instructs us to be kind and gentle. To use soft answers and pleasant words. To walk in love. To give grace and show mercy.

No one knew what drove this woman to be so unkind, but as the saying goes, “hurting people hurt people.” They subconsciously try to inflict their pain on others, unaware of their own need for healing.

The Lord assured me it was okay for me to “avoid” close contact with her as long as I maintained a right attitude. That meant forgiving, being kind, and refusing to be offended by her behavior. It also meant I needed to love and pray for her.

Do you have a contentious person in your life? If so, lift them up to the Lord. Shower them with love and prayer. You just might be surprised what God does in their life.

Photo by Julien L on Unsplash


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