Church Write-Up: Stanley, Schuller, and Conflict Resolution

I did not go to church last Sunday morning, since there were forecasts of heavy rain.  Instead, I watched Charles Stanley’s “In Touch” program, and Bobby Schuller’s “Hour of Power.”  That afternoon, I went to a seminar on conflict resolution, which was hosted by a church that I attend.  A psychology professor from an evangelical college spoke, followed by a former fire chief, who had experience in conflict resolution.

The programs overlapped with each other thematically, in areas.  The Charles Stanley and the Bobby Schuller programs talks about difficult times.  Both programs quoted Romans 8:29, which states that God predestined believers to be conformed to the image of God’s Son.  Charles Stanley said that God will not use us if we choose not to be used, and Bobby Schuller said that God and sin do not go together, like oil and water.  Bobby Schuller was saying that we should forgive others because hurt people hurt people, and a person in the audience at a seminar talked about the peace she felt after she wrote a person who hurt her a letter, apologizing for unkindness and not providing an opportunity to apologize.  Charles Stanley and the former fire chief discussed the Joseph story from the Book of Genesis, and how it concerns the pain of rejection.

The seminar in the evening was mainly common sense.  But I identified with what the professor said about the difficulty of keeping one’s cool on occasions of stress and anxiety.  He also quoted Aristotle as saying that getting angry is easy, but it is more difficult to get angry at the right time, for the right reason, and in the right way.

I have questions and reservations.  Bobby Schuller was largely discussing the importance of having a joyful attitude, but I tend to do better with a slightly depressed mood than a giddy, sugary mood.  I feel more motivated and alive, believe it or not, when I am a bit moody.  Regarding God using me as a result of whatever I have suffered, as Charles Stanley was discussing, I hope that whatever I have suffered can make me more compassionate towards others.  At the same time, I am not about to relay optimistic platitudes.  At the seminar, there was talk about restoring relationships, but I wonder if every relationship is supposed to be saved.

I’ll stop here.

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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