Hello, my brothers and sisters,
How should family disputes or arguments be dealt with when the family members are Christians? A certain family at my congregation have arguments about how they talk to each other, not being patient with one another, hurting each other’s feelings, yelling, etc. I know this because one of the ladies, who married into the family, told me about how she’s treated. If something like this continues to happen, should a leader of the congregation get involved, or should I continue to encourage her to communicate with them with love, patience, humility, and respect about how they are making her feel or treating her unfairly? Perhaps setting boundaries on how they should talk to each other?
God bless you and thank you.
"Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear. Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you" (Ephesians 4:29-32).
Difficulties exist when you are told information by only one person. Solomon warned, "The first to plead his case seems right, until another comes and examines him" (Proverbs 18:17). We all have a tendency to believe the first story we hear. It may likely be true, but we can't allow ourselves to accept it as truth until we have verified what we were told independently.
When we only hear the complaints of one side against another, it can easily degrade into gossip. Problems need to be resolved and not just sympathized with.
I gather that this woman has tried to resolve the conflicts but has not made a dent in the problem. See if you can get the preacher, an elder, or someone else you trust to go with you and this woman to sit down and discuss the problem. This will allow everyone to hear both sides of whatever is going on. "But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that 'by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established'" (Matthew 18:16). Continuing to press that this woman has to deal with the problems on her own won't cause matters to change if they haven't listened to her in the past.
Hopefully, getting these problems out into the open will lead to the various parties settling their differences and learning how to treat each other as the Lord desires.