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Combating Contentions

     Marriage is a mystery. The apostle Paul says so in the New Testament to help husbands and wives relate to one other better. Understanding the intricacies of relationships and navigating moods, personalities, insecurities, offenses and the like can be nothing short of a maze at times.

     However, the Bible gives some guidelines of how we can lessen contention and have more peace in our relationships.

     I was recently convicted when I read the following passage of Scripture:

 “Where there is no wood, the fire goes out; and where there is no talebearer, strife ceases. As charcoal is to burning coals, and wood to fire, so is a contentious man to kindle strife” Proverbs 26:20-21 (NKJV).

     The words “where there is no wood, the fire goes out,” helped me to realize that sometimes when a disagreement, an offense, or argument begins, it’s like a fire and if I choose to add no more “wood” (or words), then the fire would go out.

     I also realized the part about “as charcoal is to burning coals, and wood to fire, so is a contentious [person] to kindle strife.” I realize that while I don’t like contention, arguments or strife, I don’t always do all that I can to eliminate adding charcoal to the coals, or wood to the fire. I inadvertently continue to “kindle” strife, without realizing it.

     In fact, sometimes I keep trying to “explain,” or “get my point across,” or help my husband “understand where I’m coming from” or any other reason to continue in the “discussion,” when in actuality I’m just adding more wood to the fire.

     I hope that you will determine with me, the next time we are in that situation, that we will remember, “Where there is no wood, the fire goes out!” I know this will help us in our goal of combating contentions and help our marriages be just a little bit less of a mystery.

Copyright © 2008-2015 Debbie Reynolds Harper

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