Hatred stirs up dissension, but love covers over all wrongs.
(Proverbs 10:12, NIV)
No leader likes dissension: we tend to take it personally (sometimes it is!). Additionally: it keeps us from moving forward and doing what we’re called to do. We are all different, so disagreements will occur. We are all broken, therefore the tipping point will come: division will bloom into dissension.
How should we lead when disagreement escalates to dissension?
I think we ought to start slowly. Personally, I’m quick to respond and too often it’s an over reaction…so maybe there are only a few of us need to commit to a slow start.
Greater care is needed: we must respond to something beyond the dissension, it is only an act standing in front of an attitude. Hate is a strong word, but it’s usually the source behind divisive actions. Dissension is a shadow cast by hate. Underneath hate is a hurt, a terribly wounded heart that hasn’t found healing.
Leaders who handle only the dissenting actions while ignoring the heart issues are either ignorant or weak. There is no shame in ignorance, we all have so much to learn! The weak are insecure in their leadership and fear personal challenge and appearing out of control.
Behind the dissension is hatred, and beneath the hate is a hurt. As followers of Jesus, isn’t it better that we care for the hurt rather than crushing the dissension?
In this, we respond to dissension with love, and cover up a wrong rather than making it worse. Dissension must be handled, but let’s do so with discernment rather than swift “justice.”
Of course, there’s a flip side:
>Is there any place where you are causing the division?
>>What is the thing you hate?
>>>Where have you been hurt?
>>>>Is there a better way to find healing?
abnormalize: reckless abandonment to be different through inspiration, insight, and interruption