Martin Luther King Jr. once stated, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”
King understood the importance of difficult conversations. He believed all people were created equal. During a time when the world believed differently, King had many conversations that persuaded minds.
We spend a lot of our lives trying to persuade others while seeking to follow the next brilliant leader. I think it is easier to avoid stupidity than to seek brilliance.
Some time ago, my lack of humility disengaged me from my family and friends. I needed to right the path and allow difficult conversations to take place.
I’ve had other difficult conversations in my life. I wish I could say I handled them all amazingly, but, as people close to me could tell you, I haven’t. As a result, I decided to spend most of my time around people wiser than myself. It wasn’t hard to find them.
I discovered a new life and career by allowing smarter people to pour into my life. I was asked questions, and I discovered parts of myself I never knew. I jumped feet-first into vulnerable conversations.
One of my favorite authors, Brené Brown, writes, “Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness.”
Difficult conversations will lead you to greater vulnerability. As churchgoers, we often dislike conversations that make us uncomfortable. Sometimes we would rather discuss problems with everyone except the people who really need to hear them.
When I need to challenge someone, I evaluate my attitude. Am I being understanding and humble, or resentful and defensive? Do I have the courage to say what I need to say but also to listen to what the other person has to say? I’m excited about this issue of Light + Life because the path of a Christ-follower will include many difficult conversations.
More in This Issue
- Feature: Engaging Difficult Conversations
- Bishops: Seasoned Disagreement
- Action: Building Community Through Arts Ministry
- Discipleship: Four Factors for Church Conversations
- Discipleship: Humbled by Joseph
- Discipleship: Persevering in Conflict
- Free Methodist Church News: Converge 2:14
- Free Methodist Church News: Stumble Along with Laurie Yost