Relationships Are More Important Than Proving You’re Right

Relationships Are More Important Than Proving You’re Right

Our relationships are more important than that argument that won’t matter in 50 years.
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About a week ago, my mom and I were at the parking lot of our local bank, in the car ready to leave. I, being the driver, began to accelerate forward seeing that there were no cars in my way. My mom said, “Jasmine, stop, reverse instead!

Annoyed, I told her, “Mom, just relax OK, there are no cars pulling into the space in front!” Thinking that my mom was silly for being worried that other cars would pull into the lot in front of me since there were obviously no cars in sight, I didn’t listen and accelerated further, and that’s when I heard a loud SCRAAAATCH coming from my car’s bottom exterior.

I had not seen the cement parking stopper, and the bottom of my car had scraped against it pretty badly.

I gave my mom a sheepish grin. “Wups…


My mom didn’t look too happy, and I don’t blame her. I could’ve saved myself a whole lot of damage if I had only just listened to what she had to say instead of just assume what I thought she meant.

Thankfully, I wasn’t lectured after that, but it did make me think about things.

I started to think about all the other times I talked over my mom - and other people - because I thought I was right. I did not want to let them win. I needed to be right. I needed to be the one to win in the end, because it doesn’t feel good to lose.

I did not even give them an opportunity to explain much. As they talked, all I would do was think about how the other party was just so stubborn or so sensitive or so irritating, etc. etc.

Granted, there have been disagreements in the past where I really was right and my arguments made a lot of sense. But you know what? I didn’t come out a winner in that argument because I was the real loser. I was the person who wasn’t humble enough to listen to the feelings, thoughts, and perspectives of the other person. I was too proud to listen or hear anything they had to say. I wanted to remain close-minded and prove to the other person that I was right because I thought my opinion was correct.

Sounds horribly selfish me, but it’s happened before. Many times.

And I want to say sorry to all those people. Sorry for not being willing to step out of my own comfort zone to hear you out. Sorry for being judgmental and for thinking that I was always right.

Most importantly, I’m sorry for ever thinking that me proving myself to be right was more important than our relationship.

At the end of the day, I know that relationships with people are worth so much more than proving to them that they're wrong.

There’s a time for everything, and I’m not insinuating that we should never speak our minds and opinions to others or our loves ones and that we should agree with everything they’ve ever said. Don’t do that, because that would be wrong too.

What I am saying is that truth must be spoken in love, at the right time, with the right motive.

This issue is a near and dear to me because I have seen way too many of my loved ones hurt by other people, sometimes by the people closest to them, because those people wanted to prove a point, and they did it without even hearing the other party out, which causes the other party to feel stupid and unimportant. And to make things worse, they often put the other person down harshly. They may have won the argument, but the relationship they have with that person becomes damaged and many times, broken.

We’ve all had this happen to us, and we’ve all been guilty of doing this to others. From experience, we all know that there is no winner in this situation.

The good news is we can start mending our relationships -- present and future ones -- now by being better listeners in our conversations with others. Here's some food for thought: What is that person trying to tell you? Why are they feeling this way? What can I do, or what can I say to help them understand my point of view without hurting their esteem or making them feel worthless?

If you are currently in a situation where you are on the receiving end of this, where you have a person in your life who you feel fails to listen to you and understand your feelings, then please take my advice: Forgive them, for they don’t know what they’re doing. Seriously, that person most likely doesn’t even know that they’re failing to listen. If you fail to forgive, you start building up invisible walls around yourself and you start breaking down internally - and guess what, you begin to treat other people the same hurtful way that you feel you’ve been treated.

Second of all, pray for them. Don’t try to rebel against this person or take revenge - you’ll ultimately lose the relationship you once had with this person if you do. Instead, seek God for opportunities to explain to tell them that they’re not listening to you and why that’s hurtful. They may deny it, but trust me, they’ll start thinking about what you’ve said, and hopefully, that will get them to start self-evaluating their attitudes.

Finally, continue being a good friend to them. It’s dreadfully hard, I know, but in showing them that you care, that you listen, and that you’re willing to share your opinions and thoughts with the right attitude, it will get them thinking. It really will. Because they’ll notice that you’re different from them - that you’re always calm, you’re never out to win an argument just because, and that you are loving and selfless. That’s something that’s rare and hard to find.

Don’t worry though -- we all make mistakes from time to time, and sometimes the same ones over and over again. But the love and mercy that God has graciously shown us should be what ultimately compels us to love others and see that our relationships with people far outweigh the importance of winning an argument that ultimately won’t matter in 50 years.

Cover Image Credit: http://www.ikojoto.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Father-dad-yelling-at-daughter-conflict-fight-argument-jpg.jpg

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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American Or Christian?

Can you really be both?

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This is a thought that has lingered in my mind for a very long time.

Personally, I hate news and politics. It's depressing and it seems like both parties (and people in general) just don't get it. Political conversation gets on my ever-loving nerves and literally gets me down in the dumps for the day.

I just simply don't watch it anymore. There is too much negativity.

That doesn't mean that I am uniformed. I am not advocating for ignorance or anything like that. I prefer to read and figure out my information from sites "in the middle."

As I was eating dinner with my wife the other day we started talking about the new Abortion laws in Alabama and Georgia. As a Christ-follower and a staunch defender of Biblical inerrant, I detest abortion.

Before you read any farther, you must understand something: This article is not about my defense of my beliefs regarding hot topics like abortion or homosexuality. I do not have the time to write about said topics now. I am just asking you to accept what I believe for the sake of the article.

But, anyway, these abortion bills. I can make a pretty good case that they are Constitutional because they are protecting the Life (one of the Rights given to American Citizens) from others. Yes, I know the arguments against said point but continue with me please.

This led our conversation to talk about Homosexual marriage, something that I am against as well. And not just because of Leviticus but because of the New Testament as well.

But, shaking my head, I said something that my wife seemed to agree with:

"As a Christian, I know it's wrong and I cannot agree with it. As an American, I see no reason why it should be illegal. Unless your choices infringe someone's Rights, you should be free to do what you wish (technically speaking)."

This is my dilemma. Well, actually it's not a dilemma. I know that I am a Christian before I am an American. I love this country greatly, and I know how blessed I am to be born here. For all the hate this country gets (and some of it is deserved) and all the problems we have (and we have a lot), we are shoulders above other countries in many ways. I am so thankful for all the men and women who have served to protect me and keep me safe. I'm thankful for a lot of things. And I am proud to be an American.

But my identity in Christ comes first. This is why I do not get into politics much. I don't really care at the end of the day. Because while America has been blessed, we still have work to do here. And this is not my forever home. This is not where I will spend eternity.

I try and respect everyone's opinions, and I earnestly try to love everyone, even when they trash and disrespect my beliefs and convictions. But I must put my call to Christ about anything that has to do with this nation. I will pray for ALL our leaders because I was told to do so (I prayed for President Obama when he was in office). And I will be here to support this nation. But I cannot put it above Christ's commands.

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