Have you ever encountered a difficult person? At least four exist. They include the aggressive, the complainer, the people pleaser, and the passive resistive. The first two are direct in their challenges. The latter two are indirect.
Beware, the difficult person might be you!
Each of us has a bent toward one of these behaviors; although, left to ourselves, outside surrender to Christ, we borrow the difficult behavior from each of the four types. A difficult person is: (1) disconnected from the hearts of others, (2) un-deflected through his difficult behavior, (3) non-reflected in his heart condition by those whom he encounters, and (4) misdirected toward foolishness over wisdom.
When dealing with a difficult person, our first inclination often stems from our sinful nature, which will be foolish, rather than wise. We will be slow to listen, quick to speak, and quick to become angry, damaging our relationships. When we are surrendered to being led by the Spirit of Christ, we will be wise. “My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry” (James 1:19).
Solomon taught: “He who answers before listening — that is his folly and his shame” (Proverbs 18:13).
This week, when you encounter a difficult person, be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. It won’t be you restoring your relationships; rather, it will be Christ in you.