037. Relationships: What Do I Do When I Have To Say Something That Might Hurt?

24 Apr, 2012

You ever have to face a situation where you might have to hurt someone’s feelings, but it’s something that you have to do?  And I’m not talking about telling someone to shut up while you’re trying to watch a movie in a theater.  Don’t ever do that..  just ask the manager to kick them out.

I’m talking about touchy situations where a family member or friend might get offended because you might have to point out one of their faults.

So what is the difference between yelling at someone in the movies verses talking to your family member? It’s motive.  One case, you’re correcting someone out of frustration and the other one is out of love.

Your entire approach changes when you say something out of love. But love isn’t enough.  It goes a little beyond your righteous motives.  The other person has to understand that you’re doing it out of love.

You might think you’re speaking out of love, but what if they interpret your words as condescending or insulting? “Your hair is messed up.” “Those pants make you look fat.” “You should wear a mask.”

Some people are sensitive.  Others have pride.  It’s easy to step on their toes, even when your intentions are completely out of love.

So what else do you need other than love? You need wisdom. Wisdom is the who, what, where, when, why, and how.

Who should say something?  Are you the best parent to talk to the child.  Should you get someone else to approach them? What should you say?  Should you share a time where you made the same mistake? Where should you say it?  In private or right as it’s happening? When should you say it?  Should you wait till they calm down?  How long do you let it go before you say something? Why are you saying something?  How should you approach them?  Should you be stern, open up with a joke, or be soft spoken? It’s tough.  

There’s so many different ways something like this can be handled.

So what do we do?

When you have to face a delicate situation where something needs to be said – do these things:

  • have a loving spirit
  • pray for wisdom (who, what, where, when, why, how)
  • seek wisdom from others
  • pray that God would work in their heart.

It’s no guarantee that things will work out, but hopefully you’ve done what you think God wanted you to do in the proper manner. And then maybe they won’t get so offended when you hand them a mask.

“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” Ephesians 4:2

Take Time To Pray: Ask God to help you with love and wisdom. Today’s Fruit of the Spirit: Love