Grace in conflict

By Elaine Vitikainen

My stomach tightened as I remembered the situation. I was catching up with a friend about some work colleagues I used to supervise. I cringed inside when I thought about the intense conflict which I had tried for months to mediate. They were good people with genuine intentions, but they had incompatible styles of working. Things got so bad that in the end we all agreed that the only way forward was to separate. I was so sad. I’d failed to fix things. But as we ended it, we created opportunities for them to forgive each other as they moved on.

Imagine my delight when I found out some years later that these people were working together again – this time successfully. At the time, trying to mediate had been so emotionally draining. But what I see now is that, when human strength and wisdom are not enough, God’s grace is always sufficient. It is only God’s undeserved grace which can genuinely restore relationships.

  • How can I be a ‘steward of grace’ (1 Peter 4:10) this week?
  • Who do I need to apologise to or forgive?
  • Where do I need to rely more on God’s transforming grace?