Category Archives: 20 Lessons Faith

Solitude: The Quiet Discipline

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Solitude: The Quiet Discipline

“Solitude is the furnace of transformation. Without solitude, we remain victims of our society and continue to be entangled in the illusions of the false self.”—Henri Nouwen

And he said to them, "Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest awhile." For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat.—Mark 6:31

We have little of it
If there is one thing that our society has mass deficiencies in its solitude. Solitude is being alone and quiet so that we can contemplate. It demands freedom from distractions by television, radio, devices, and other people. And it's in solitude that we withdraw from the noise of life, engage reflective thought, war with personal failure, explore future options, and find direction from God.

Maybe we're trying to avoid it?
Most of us don't like the quietness of solitude. We have grown accustomed to the noise that fills our souls, consumes our minds, and drives our behaviors. The static is not just coming from the devices we carry. It comes from the conversations, problems, meetings, sporting activities, and the flurry of family members traveling in competing directions all at the same time. Without knowing it, we have grown accustomed to the noise as if we need the stimulation. "Stimulation" not "solitude" is the theme that describes our lives.

Given the noise referenced above, why would we resist solitude, when it appears we might be craving it? Maybe it's because being alone and uninterrupted is terrifying. In absolute quietness, we are forced to view the infrastructure we have built in our life. In solitude, we are forced to face issues we struggle with and have to be honest about the state of our character, relationship, marriage, children, and work. In solitude, we encounter a God who wants to comfort and challenge us. In solitude, there is accountability with God who knows all and sees all. In solitude, our motives and desires are revealed, and we have to assess and evaluate them when the noise of the world allowed us to avoid them.

Yet a wise man is willing to look square in the eye of the infrastructure of their life rather than live with a lie. Great men are strong enough to withstand the silence and willing to confront the truth about themselves in the stillness of silence.

So what are the benefits of solitude?

Three Benefits Of Solitude

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One | In solitude, we are forged
No one wrote more eloquently on solitude than did Henri Nouwen. He said, "Solitude is the furnace of transformation. Without solitude, we remain victims of our society and continue to be entangled in the illusions of the false self." And why is this? Because in solitude, we face the facts about ourselves, not the persona we seek to project or the person that others see and tend to believe. Isolation thus terrifies most men because it is the retreat toward reality. But it simultaneously beckons us because it's the voyage to transformation. It frightens us to reflect on the truth about our sinful nature, desires, and behaviors, but it equally invites us to know God more deeply and follow Him more intimately. In solitude, lies we have wrongly believed are displayed, discovered, disputed, and dismissed, and when combined with the truth of Scripture, they are defeated. Solitude thus becomes the furnace that men who need being refined, forged, and sharpened.

Two | In solitude, we hear the voice of God
The Books of Kings has an intriguing encounter of man with God. Elijah, a prophet of God, beat up, discouraged, and exhausted and went to a remote place where he found refuge in a cave and sought God. Here is the account.

"And [God] said, 'Go out and stand on the mount before the Lord.' And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper.'"—1 Kings 19:11-12

A "low whisper" is how God chooses to speak us, but how do we hear that whisper in the noise of life? We usually don't, and it is why we often don't believe that God is still speaking today. The fact is that he is, but we are often not able to hear him if you desire to hear God's "low whisper" get away and practice solitude.

Three | In solitude, we discover a divine relationship
"Be still, and know that I am God," declares Psalm 46:10. And it is in silence that we find the need for this "knowing." And knowing is not just an intellectual exchange; it is intimacy with God found in silent communication. Like the intimacy we discover as we lie with a son or daughter in bed as they begin to drift to sleep—this child longs for the safety of closeness that is not found in verbal communication or recreational stimulation. This type of intimacy is only found in being close to God in the practice solitude. For solitude is not about escaping to be alone, it's about escaping the noise to be alone "with God," which might appear to others as escapism. But it's not isolation from God, only isolation from the things of this world.

In fact, the more intense our lives, the more we need those times of solitude. This is not a "time out." Instead, it's a time to be "in." It's a "time in" with God.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

Leading Anger

Anger-a-daily-devotional-for-mens-ministry-by-vince-miller

Leading Anger

Anybody can become angry - that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way - that is not within everybody's power and is not easy.—Aristotle

Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil. Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need. Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And 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, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.—Ephesians 4:25-32

Prone to anger?
So many men I know, are prone to anger. In fact, many men of the Bible, in the act of anger have inflicted grave injury on others in their rage. Moses is a prime example. In passion, he stepped in over his concern for the mistreatment of his fellow Hebrews. Yet his untamed passion brewed into a physical act of anger that resulted in homicide—in much the same way Cain acted with Able at the beginning of the Bible. And again later, when Moses was leading the people into the promised land, he was instructed by God to speak to the rock, and God would open a river of water for his thirsty and obstinate people. Moses, however, in frustration, struck the rock over the criticisms of the Hebrews. He was right to be passionate, but wrong to not control his holy dissatisfaction, which resulted in disobedience to God. Because of that one moment of defiant anger, he prevented by God from leading the people into the promised land.

In Cain's situation, his anger originated from misplaced selfishness and jealousy that resulted in violence. In Moses' case, he had a right to be angry, but his unchecked passion led to reckless fury. I am sure you can identify as we have all been guilty of the same—including posts that should not have been shared, emails that should not have been sent, or words that should never have been spoken. And there are even a few of us who have acted violently inflicting unjust physical injury on others.

So what can we learn?

Two Non-Negotiables About Anger

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One | Anger is not wrong
"Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil."—Ephesians 4:26-27

It's clear from many biblical texts that anger is not wrong. God himself expressed anger through many Old Testament prophets who he used to rebuke individuals to entire nations for sin—case in point; Sodom and Gomorrah. Or consider the perpetual evil of mankind which resulted in a world-wide flood wiping out corruption except for single faithful family—case in point; Noah the great flood. God justly hates evil and wickedness. And we too should know God's holy anger—but we must moderate this because we do not act from a position of perfect love, holiness, and righteousness like God.

Unfortunately, it not righteous anger that usually gets us into trouble. When our anger is lit, it becomes a destructive wildfire around issues that are far more personal and typically surrounds our loss of control. It's sparked when a child tests a boundary we have set. It burns into flame when we feel we are losing in discussion with our spouse. Its ignites when a colleague at work takes credit for what we have done. The problem is that if unchecked, our initial anger will burn into full flame, and then words and actions are used to inflict burning pain which damage relationships. Frequently, it is those we love most who experience the results of the anger we carry inside.

Two | Anger can result in wrongdoing.
"Give no opportunity to the devil."—Ephesians 4:27

Anger is a primary human emotion that all of us experience. It's a normal human reaction to everyday annoyances. However, that being said, how we handle our anger makes all the difference in the world. Unmoderated anger leads to unhealthy and often sinful actions, so our challenge is to bring our passion under control—or it might be better stated—under God's control. The following are five essential practices for us to keep our anger under His control.

The Five Practices
First | Wait
Don't feel the need to act immediately. There are a few situations that require immediate action, like a life-threatening situation, but for all others wait. Wait to respond until you have regained full access to your mental facilities when your emotions, tone, and temperament are under control. Like Paul says in the verse above, "Be angry and do not sin." Paul's is giving an allowance to anger but not the activity of the anger. The only way to do this is to wait to respond until you can do so in a measured and wise way.

Second | Keep short accounts
In the same verse, Paul says, "Do not let the sun go down on your anger." Addressing the issue as soon as it is possible is of vast importance. This is especially true in covenantal relationships, like in a marriage, a family, or in a church where unresolved anger can lead to secrecy, resentment, bitterness, and conflict that prevents oneness. Many couples believe the application of this verse is literal, meaning two parties in disagreement don't sleep until the issue is resolved. While the application is not a bad practice, it may not be necessary. Learning to address the problem rather than bury it is the principle of the text—which means the short accounting method is excellent when it comes to matters of disagreement.

Third | Forgive
In Ephesians 4:32, Paul instructs us to "Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you." The longer you hold on to unforgiveness, the less kind and tender you become to others. Unforgiveness is a prison that robs many of real joy. The irony is this; the longer we hold onto unforgiveness, the more unforgiveness shackles us. Often the other party is entirely unaware of our issues; therefore, the only person we are binding is ourself. Consequently, we hold onto unforgiveness at our peril, but when we learn to forgive to become like Christ, who demonstrated complete forgiveness.

Fourth | Lean on the Spirit
Invite the Holy Spirit to help you. He dwells within you and is your counselor, teacher, and helper. It is hard to stay angry when we invite the Spirit to help, convict, guide, and direct. Jesus said in John 16:8, "And when [the Spirit] comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment." Admittedly there are deep wounds that need time and help to deal with, but in all cases, the Holy Spirit lives within us direct us toward right and righteousness.

Fifth | Practice fruitful engagement
Memorize and practice the fruit of the Holy Spirit, especially in situations where you are angry or irritated. Leaning on the products that come from being connected to the Spirit, help you to know when you are out of step with God's way. Allow the fruit to become your plumbline, and when you are out-of-line, let the Spirit guide you back. "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law." (Galatians 5:22-23). While everyone is prone to moments of anger, don't let your anger control you, but instead, be controlled by the Spirit.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

Discerning Truth

Discerning Truth a mens daily devotional by Vince Miller

Discerning Truth

"We need discernment in what we see and what we hear and what we believe."—Charles Swindoll

"And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ."—Philippians 1:9-10

Take a discernment test
Take a few minutes and read over the following statements. For each statement, consider if the statement is "true" or "false."

  1. The Bible contains truths but also mistakes that make it inaccurate and culturally irrelevant, so it cannot be trusted for providing relevant truth.
  2. There are many paths to heaven; therefore beliefs from other religions should be incorporated in developing a holistic and complete worldview.
  3. A loving God would never send anyone to hell for eternity.
  4. We are born into this world inherently good; we are not sinful as some suggest from birth.
  5. Jesus did not perform real miracles—for example, turning water to wine, healing the blind, or raising himself from the dead. These so-called miracles are only stories that gained acceptance over time by a few followers.
  6. There is no historical evidence that holds any merit that Jesus rose from the dead.
  7. When we get to heaven, Jesus will weigh our good deeds against our bad ones to determine whether we will gain entry.
  8. The Bible states that "God helps those who help themselves."
  9. God promises to relieve us of suffering in this life if we have enough faith.
  10. There is little to no archeological evidence of Biblical accounts found in the Middle East.

How many statements did you identify as true and how many as false? The reality is that every one of these ten statements is false. Not even one of them is bears any truth. But do you know how to spot actual evidence versus those that are fake?

How to spot the truth

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First | Learn to the genuine article
All of us grow up believing something—correct or not. As humans, we are a believing being after all. At first, we blindly believe, merely accepting what we are taught as children. Over time, as we physically age and intellectually mature, the data we take in grows and the thoughts we have about life, work, and faith gain independence from our family of origin. At this point, we form personal judgments about the world. Over a lifetime, we construct large clusters of these beliefs, images, and ideas called a belief system or worldview. Unless you are aware of what is the truth and what is not, you can form entire systems of belief around wrong ideas (untruths) that others attempt to perpetuate. Many become blind to these accepted untruths and form biases that sometimes go unchallenged due to emotional attachments to them.

Consider for a moment how the Federal Bureau of Investigation prepares people to spot counterfeit currency. As they train one to have an eye for fakes, they do not exclusively show them counterfeit bills. In fact, they primarily show them authentic currency and train them to spot the characteristics of the real thing—not fakes. As they become increasingly intimate with the genuine product, they know when they spot an ingenuine product.

The same is true when it comes to your faith. When you read or hear something that is not true, like the statements above, there ought to be some recognition or even concern that what is being communicated might contain a falsehood or a manipulated truth. However, you will only notice this if you are a student of the genuine product. Notice what the apostle Paul says to his protégé Timothy.

"But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work."—2 Timothy 3:14-17

As Paul suggests, the better we know the genuine article—scriptural truth—the better we know God himself and his salvation. As we get to know what God's says, we will also know when we are being sold a "fake bill" of goods. When we start a relationship with God, regardless of our physical age, we are turning our lives and futures over to Him and his way. It only makes sense that we consistently discover what God has to say and allow His truth to teach, rebuke, correct, and train us in His righteousness. We then need to not only accept these beliefs but to be able to explain these truths in sensible ways to those around us whose information about God is far from reality. We need to know the truth, live it, and explain it. That starts with becoming a student of His book—The Bible.

Second | Trust credible historical evidence
Christians who study the ancient proof supportive of Christianity are continually amazed at what they find. One distinctive of our faith is that it is rooted in history with real people, real situations, real places, and actual events. This is not a faith based on myths constructed in the distant past, but concrete evidence based in a reasonable faith rooted in history—not fake news. Consider the following:

  • Archeologists are continually finding new evidence of the accounts we read of in the Old Testament. Yes constantly. And while pop media is not talking about it, in the last few decades, we have discovered tens of thousands of artifacts that support the writings of the Bible. While we don't have evidence for every story in the Bible, archeological finds are not contradicting the Bible.
  • Historical accounts from other people groups such as Egyptians, Romans, and Greeks align with Biblical accounts. For instance, the forced exile of the Jews by Nebuchadnezzar as well as their repatriation by Cyrus is found in extrabiblical historical records. Even contemporary historians in Jesus' day reference Jesus and His followers for their care of the poor, elderly and needy, as well as their willingness to die for their beliefs.
  • Even the evidence for the resurrection is overwhelming. As Chuck Colson said, "If a few burglars could not keep Watergate a secret, how could twelve apostles fake the accounts of the resurrection and then all die for their faith."

Some don't like the fact that the historical record is accurate, so they refuse to believe it and find every evidence possible that points to disproving its credibility and reliability. Ironically, a good historian generally believes what they observe from ancient sources unless they can find evidence that proves it to be false. This alone is an insightful twist, and thus, it becomes all the more important for believers to know the reasons for Christianity's reliability. Because you will eventually be challenged, and we ought to know the best evidence and answers. Or at minimum, be given a chance to find them.

Third | Read and strengthen your apology
Wikipedia defines apologetics this way: "Apologetics (from Greek, "speaking in defense") is the religious discipline of defending religious doctrines through systematic argumentation and discourse. Early Christian writers (c. 120–220) who defended their beliefs against critics and recommended their faith to outsiders were called Christian apologists." As Christ followers, we ought to be able to defend our faith and have a reasoned discussion with others. Here are some book that may help you begin your journey

  • Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis
  • Evidence that Demands a Verdict, Josh McDowell
  • The Reason for God, Timothy Keller
  • The Case for Christ, Lee Strobel
Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

Getting Godly Advice

Godly Advice a blog by Vince Miller of Men's Ministry

Getting Godly Advice

“Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers. It may not be difficult to store up in the mind a vast quantity of facts within a comparatively short time, but the ability to form judgments requires the severe discipline of hard work and the tempering heat of experience and maturity.”—Calvin Coolidge

“Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.”—Proverbs 15:22

Who's Your Go-To For Wisdom
Who do you go to for advice? Your spouse? Your pastor? A trusted friend? If these folks are in the mix, you’ve got a pretty good list going. But getting good advice is more than just luck. The ripple effect from every decision you make, be it big or small, can have far-reaching consequences. I am not suggesting that you stall and procrastinate for fear of making a poor choice. I am suggesting, however, that you base your decisions on a biblically sound process of seeking God’s will – including getting Godly advice – and I do mean Godly with a capital “G.”

Now pay close attention to that last statement. Getting Godly advice is only one of several critical steps in determining God’s will. Entire volumes of books have been written about the process. You can always be confident about a course of action that doesn’t violate God’s Word, has been confirmed the Holy Spirit, and is supported by seeking the Godly truth. But not all decisions are so straightforward. And seeking Godly counsel (in combination with several other vital indicators) can contribute to choosing wisely. Proverbs makes rather a big deal of it:

“Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.”—Proverbs 11:14

“Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.”—Proverbs 13:20

“Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.”—Proverbs 15:22

So “who you gonna call?” You might not want to make the same mistake King Rehoboam made (1 Kings 12). His choice to heed the counsel of young men his age rather than that of older men who had known his father, King Solomon, ended up dividing the kingdom and eventually led to its destruction. The lesson being, choose your counselors well.

How To Find Wise Counsel

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One | Seek counsel from older men
Find a godly man about ten years your senior and extract the truth from him. By listening to an older, wiser, more mature man who has “been around the block a few times,” you will discover nuances in decision making that will help you as you make decisions. They are often voices who possess deep spiritual insight and who are known to seek God’s direction for themselves.

Two | Seek counsel from men who have faced your issues
Talk not only to those who have plenty of life experience but also to those who perhaps have faced decisions similar to yours in the past. Buy them a meal, and spend a little time learning from how they handled their challenges. Discover the issues and problems they faced and what they learned through the process.

Three | Seek counsel from men who challenge you
While it’s easy to seek counsel only from those who you know ahead of time will agree with what you, maybe you need to hear from those who have a contrarian voice to what you might need to hear. And when I say contrarian, I mean contrarian in their delivery and position. Every one of us knows a person with a ton of life wisdom whose personality, approach, and opinion challenge us. And while we don’t like to invite them to speak into our life, they often have knowledge that we can discover. Even disagreeable people have learned great truth throughout their life. Finding "the meat and tossing the bones” is part of our job in seeking the truth—even from disagreeable people. Wise people learn how to gain wisdom from people on the other side of the aisle. And men who carefully listen even to a challenging voice grow wiser just in the activity of listening.

Four | Seek counsel from men who have failed
Men who have failed, which is all of us, fail for specific reasons. They have learned insightful lessons, and you need to learn from them. They are often waiting to tell you to avoid the same mistakes. You will even get to hear and perhaps see the ramifications from these poor choices firsthand. Go to these men and learn from them, and do not make the same mistakes they did, but learn from what got them into their situations. This type of counsel is frequently avoided but is an excellent source of wisdom.

Five | Ask God for counsel
Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths.”

Let’s just put it out there—real men admit that they don’t know everything. In his book Decision Making & the Will of God, Garry Friesen points out that the right attitude for acquiring wisdom includes humility and teachability—along with reverence, diligence, uprightness, and faith. In a nutshell, Friesen’s approach to making the best decisions includes:

1. Asking God for wisdom.
2. Scouring the pages of Scripture.
3. Conducting some personal research.
4. Seeking wise counsel.
5. Looking back on (and learning from) your own life experience.

The ultimate source of wise counsel, of course, is God Himself. And let’s face it—even in all our earnestness to make the best, most sensible, most God-honoring choices, we’ll still occasionally blow it. But God is always with us. He has the power not only to use our mistakes for good but also to redirect us to the right path. So keep moving forward, confident that as you grow in spiritual maturity, you’ll also get better and better at making the best choices—in part because you have chosen your counselors well.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

Battling Obvious Sin

The Battle for Sexual Purity a blog by Vince Miller

Battling Obvious Sin

"I would rather die than do something which I know to be a sin, or to be against God's will."—Joan of Arc

"Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means!"—Romans 6:1-2

We Must Engage The Battle Even When The War Is Won
The war is on. The enemy is relentless. And fight we must. I'm talking about our battle with sin. True, Jesus paid for all our sins, past, present, and future, when He took our place on the cross. But—need I say it—His greatest sacrifice in no way gives us the license to keep sinning.
On the contrary, Jesus is our example of the ultimate man fully engaged in battle until his final breath. Fully divine and fully human, He remained sinless in the struggle—unlike us.

So we battle with sin in our lives for many good reasons. We fight because we love Jesus. We fight to be credible witnesses to the world of His love for one and all. We fight to war with apathy, shame, and fear. And we fight it so that we can draw ever closer to the battle that Jesus fought for us. But we never fight to earn our salvation, that is a battle Jesus fought and won.

And here's the tricky part. The battle is not external. We don't fight it with guns, swords, bows, and fists. The battle is internal. So we must be active and intentional about our battle plan. And we can start by identifying three battle areas of sin so we can "know the enemy" and strategize accordingly.

Three Battles We Fight

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One | We Battle With Our Hurts
Nobody's perfect. Even our most beloved family members and closest friends let us down on occasion—sometimes inflicting wounds that run deep and linger long. Oh, how it can hurt. And sometimes we want to nurse the hurt and hold a grudge, don't we? But even the Lord's Prayer reflects Jesus' desire, in His typically radical, counter-culture way, that we do the opposite—"…and forgive us our sins as we forgive those who have sinned against us." So who in your life, have you not yet forgiven? While it might be easier (or shall we say "lazier") to continue living imprisoned to the sin of unforgiveness, Jesus wants us to battle it by extending to others the forgiveness, love, grace, and mercy that He has shown to us.

Two | We Battle With Our Habits
What regular, repeated behavior patterns do you need to address? Familiar to many of us are bad habits that do harm in some way both to us and to others, like greed, selfishness, overconsumption, offensive language, joking at another's expense, hurtful sarcasm, smoking, pornography—the list could go on, but I just bet you've already recognized yourself in there somewhere. Following Christ, however, means conquering these habits and developing new ones in their place. We need habits that build our character and establish the kind of virtue in our lives that truly reflect who Jesus is to the rest of the world.

Three | We Battle With Our Hang-ups
Some things in life stop us cold. They are blockades that seem impossible to get past, personal fixations that keep us from moving forward and going all in. We all get hung up on something. Maybe it's a family of origin pattern of behavior, or personal insecurity, that has embedded itself assumptively into our everyday lives. But in Christ, we are overcomers. As children of God, we have access to His strength. With the help of the Holy Spirit, we can navigate these minefields and emerge victoriously.

You Don't Battle Alone
We are not alone in our battle against sin. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit have our six. Our pride (now there's a weighty sin topic) must not convince us that we can wage and win this war on our power. Be warned—it's a daily, ongoing fight. But we must not surrender to defeat when occasionally we stumble. Our only surrender is to Jesus Christ Himself. We submit to Him, and in the end, His victory is ours. Guaranteed.

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil."—Ephesians 6:10-11

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

The Importance Of Brotherhood

Father of Influence a mens blog by Vince Miller

The Importance of Brotherhood

"The more man knows of man, the better for the common brotherhood among men."—Charles Dickens

"For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them."—Matthew 18:20

We Need Each Other
Brothers, I'm just going to say it. We need each other. But our culture would have us believe otherwise, wouldn't it – encouraging the solitary, independent, "I can do this alone" sort of attitude among men. "Real men don't need anyone else," we're told, and we've taken the bait – hook, line, and sinker. In fact, statistics show that most guys do not have a close male friend. How can this be good?

Well, it's not. As is often the case, truth flies in the face of culture. Real men know they need each other. While autonomy may come easy for us, we've got to live out our quest for manhood in the context of brotherhood with other believers. It is within Christian brotherhood that we discover the riches of the deep spiritual relationship modeled to us by the Godhead: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. It is also through brotherhood that we live out faith, love, and oneness that extends God's message of grace and reconciliation to the world. This is the environment where iron sharpens iron, and we voluntarily put ourselves in proximity with other men to avoid the catastrophes in our lives that would unravel our manhood.

So how do we achieve the "iron sharpens iron" synergy that promotes true Christian brotherhood? Here are three strategies to get us started.

Three Strategies for Building Brotherhood

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One | Transparency
Let's get real about the issues and challenges we face. Knowing who we are in Christ and embracing the forgiveness that is ours because of what He did on the cross, let's move beyond the fear and shame that cause us to pretend, and instead live in full self-disclosure and freedom from the bondage of sin.

Two | Accountability
Let's willingly submit ourselves to accountability with other brothers—not just the loving but convicting "no, don't do that" brand of accountability, but also the encouraging accountability that says, "I am behind you; let's do this together."

Three | Consistency
Let's be intentional about getting together. Rarely will it happen just by accident. You might even set a standing date to meet with a brother – like the first and third Thursday of every month, for example. Make it count. Build relationships that go beyond casual – that drive us to deeper levels of awareness of each other and the challenges we face. "And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another…"—Hebrews 10:24-25

Jesus was a radical. He was not one to acquiesce to errant cultural trends. By His teaching and by His example, we see that true Christian brotherhood is essential to our spiritual health. It's got to be a priority. Paul challenges us in Romans 12:10, "Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor." Let's get radical. Let's do this.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

Demystifying The Bible

Dust It Off a daily devotional by Vince Miller

Demystifying The Bible

“Most people are bothered by those passages of Scripture they do not understand, but the passages that bother me are those I do understand.”—Mark Twain

"You shall teach them to your children, talking of them when you are sitting in your house, and when you are walking by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise."—Deuteronomy 11:19

It's Intimidating
Are you intimidated by the Bible with its couple of thousand text-dense pages? If so, you're not alone. Too many Bibles sit on end tables and nightstands, bindings uncracked. Why is it so hard to get into God's Word?

We've already touched on part of the answer – the Bible is a big book! But many of us also struggle with a fear of the unknown. We may have grown up hearing lots of "Bible stories," but we don't know too much about the book itself. So let's learn a few Bible basics – let's demystify the Scriptures with a brief overview so that we can start enjoying the riches it contains.

The Key Parts

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Part One | The Old Testament
Maybe it'll help to think of the Bible not as one big book, but rather as a collection of books gathered in one volume. The first 39 books make up what we call the Old Testament – all the stuff that happened before Jesus came along. Talk about adventure and suspense, comedy and drama, history and romance, mystery and intrigue, heroes and villains – the Bible has it all. We find ourselves engrossed in the story of creation, the patriarchs of the faith, the Exodus from Egypt, the conquest of Israel, the time of the judges, the succession of kings, the war within Israel, and the period of rebuilding. And threaded through it all is a three-faceted theme: the problem of evil, the redemption of man, and the need for faith in God.

Part Two | The New Testament
The New Testament comprises 27 books and personal letters that relate the good news of God's grace and mercy, and the salvation He makes possible through His Son Jesus Christ. The first four books – the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John – chronicle Jesus' birth, life, ministry, death, and resurrection, setting the stage for the building of His church. What follows are the often heart-wrenching writings of His disciples as they established the church, corresponded with local bodies of believers and their leaders, and carried Jesus' message to the rest of the known world.

Part Three | The "Meta-Narrative"
The meta-narrative, the focus of the entire Bible, is, of course, Jesus Christ Himself. He is what ties it all together – every theme, story, and promise from the Old Testament points to Him and is fulfilled in Him. We discover in the New Testament that Jesus becomes the new:

  • ADAM – perfect as a man
  • KING – appointed by God
  • KINGDOM – establishing one out of all nations
  • TEMPLE – constructed in the heart of a man by the Holy Spirit
  • PRIEST – who offers a propitiation for sins
  • ATONEMENT – who atones for all sin in all time
  • SACRIFICE – giving his life on the cross for us
  • JUDGE – who is just in all dealings
  • CREATION – dying to create a new life
  • LAW – one governed by grace through faith

We call the Bible "God's Word" because He inspired it. He reveals Himself in its pages, and to read it, ponder it, study it, and even commit it to memory, is to know Him better and better. So let's stop cheating ourselves of the wisdom, instruction, inspiration, and joy to be found between its opening words "In the beginning…" and its final "Amen" – and get up close and personal with our Father, the Creator and King of the universe.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

How Serving Changes Us

Serving a devotional by Vince Miller

How Serving Changes Us

The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: “If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?” But the good Samaritan reversed the question: “If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?”—Martin Luther King, Jr.

"Even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." Jesus, Matthew 20:28

Service Is A Major Theme For Followers
The Bible frequently speaks about ways that we can use our gifts and how we can love and serve others. Our love of God is demonstrated through obedience by how we serve others in love. The well-known parable of The Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37) establishes this matter front and center and exposes how often those who followers of Christ often miss opportunities for serving others because they are distracted by self-concern or even religious obedience. But the heroine of the story, a Samaritan, someone the Jews considered detestable, recognized a need and met that need. And in the end, he was praised for his love and stewardship of the talent, time, and treasure he had been given to the service of someone outside of his religion, race and community circle.

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The Ultimate Example Of Service
But the one who told this story was the quintessential servant of people; Jesus. He is the ultimate prototype of service done from the right motivation (love) and for the right reason (God’s glory). Jesus was never unwilling to stop and engage with someone who was hurting, needed help, cried for healing, had a hang-up, or even considered by onlookers a hypocrite. Sometimes he stopped en route to aid someone with spiritual ailment other times it was physical need. Regardless, Jesus was never too busy to stop and care for those who needed to be both loved and served. Even dying the cross, as Jesus’ life was coming to a close, he welcomed a criminal into His kingdom. Now that is a breath of service lived right up to the end.

And Jesus maintained a posture of service, which seems out of place for a King. Typical Kings demanded service and did not come to serve. As a demonstration of service, on the night before his death, we see an extreme example of this posture. At the last supper, which the disciples knew as the Passover meal, Jesus welcomes each of the disciples into the upper room and washes their feet as they dined together. The King of Kings bows takes on the role of an ordinary household servant and cleans each of the disciple’s feet. He was teaching something of great importance—service is a necessary act of obedience, and something demanded of every disciple. Here is what our King and Servant said.

“Do you understand what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you. Truly, truly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.”—John 13:12-17

The surprising thing about this moment and teaching is that Jesus, knowing that Judas would betray him, also washed his feet. Conscious of this Jesus persists with the lesson and served his enemy and betrayer. The teaching is profound and challenging. Service an act of obedience by a disciple, not only to those we prefer and appreciate, but even those who might be considered an enemy— those who may mistreat, scorn, or take advantage of us. This is the ultimate example of service—to serve those who may not serve us in return. It’s service done from the right motivation for the right reason regardless of the reciprocation. And Jesus lived this out, dying for all, irrespective of if they choose to accept his gift of life eternal.

But What’s In It For Me?
Is there any win in this for me? And yes there is if you hold to a long view. And the win is big.

It’s easy to forget that our lives are about something further out. Something beyond this place we call earth. Our physical time here is but a speck in time and preparation for life beyond this place. What we give ourselves to in this life can ripple through all eternity. Listen to what Jesus says in the Gospel of Matthew.

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’“—Matthew 25:34-40

Our service has an impact on our witness, and this ripple is felt into eternity. And while we don’t always see it (Note: “Lord, when did we see you hungry”), it matters. You may not experience it, feel it, or even see the ripple but your service, done in the right motivation for the right reason, has an impact. Maybe the win is not seen immediately but often as we enter eternity we discover our service had far more impact. It may even change entire generations of people.

But never forget service does change you as well. When we serve others we serve God (Note: “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.”). It is clear from this teaching that the person we actually serve as we serve others is God himself. For a life submitted to God serves God, and him alone. And serving others, again from the right motivation and for the right reasons, is done for God and His glory. And what is great about this is that it changes us—you and me. In service to God, our hearts become more tender, we begin to see the situations of others in a different light, we learn to see people as God sees them and our hearts become more like the heart of God. It is in service we are changed from one degree of glory to the next.

Every day one has the opportunity to serve and love others. To be like Jesus is to be a servant to others. It will ripple into eternity.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

The Reason We Pray

Prayer Tactics a blog by Vince Miller

The Reason We Pray

"The purpose of prayer is emphatically not to bend God's will to ours, but rather to align our will to His."—John Stott

“And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. “And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him."—Jesus, Matthew 6:5-8

So Why Do We Pray?
Why do we pray, anyway? Think of some of the prayers you may have learned as a child. "Now I lay me down to sleep…," or "God is great, God is good" come to mind. And as we've previously discussed, many of us know the Lord's Prayer. If you're familiar with these prayers, you'll recall that in the first example we ask God for something. In the second, we thank Him for something. And in the Lord's Prayer, Jesus suggests an outline of how to pray. But beyond asking for things or expressing gratitude, have you ever really thought about why we pray? Just what is prayer's purpose?

Perhaps it'll help if we think of what happens when we pray. There are at least three authentic outcomes of our prayer time with God.

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Three Outcomes Of Prayer
One | Conversation
Conversation occurs. Prayer is talking with God. He's a person. He is three persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), and when we engage in prayer, we enjoy a close encounter, if you will, with the Godhead. It may seem like we do all the talking, but if every once in a while we take a breath and be still, we can gain a sense of His side of the conversation.

Two | Intimacy
Intimacy is fostered. Just like a conversation with our spouse, a parent, or a close friend promotes more in-depth levels of intimacy, dialogue with God can drive us to deeper levels of sharing. But this only happens when we take our interaction beyond simple facts and needs. We have to be honest, make ourselves vulnerable – not always easy! But we gain the most when we steer our conversation with the Father toward our deepest needs, desires, and emotions – communicating to God our very heart, soul, and mind.

Three | Change
Change happens. Whether we realize it or not, every encounter with God triggers some change in us – big or small – and ultimately all for good. It's a process of transformation that moves us closer and closer to fulfilling our potential as children of God. He is unchanging – His character, His attributes, His love for us wavers not one bit. So the change happens in us. This is the power of prayer. Sometimes the change is an immediate conviction prompting us to stop something, start something, or adjust an attitude of the heart. Sometimes the change is miraculous. Sometimes the change is slow, even subtle, and occurs over time. But we are never the same again.

Any way you slice it, prayer is a means of connecting us with the divine and supernatural – with God Himself. And the more often we do it, the abler we are to recognize His voice and discern His will.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

10 Prayer Tactics

Prayer Tactics a blog by Vince Miller

10 Prayer Tactics

"To be a Christian without prayer is no more possible than to be alive without breathing."—Martin Luther

"For where two or three are gathered in my name, there I am among them."— Jesus, in Matthew 18:20

Change Your Approach To Prayer
How would you rate your comfort level when it comes to prayer? Do you feel a little reserved praying in front of others – or even when it's just you and God? Do you wonder how often to pray, how long to pray, where to pray, or under what circumstances to pray? Here are ten ideas for establishing a healthy, satisfying, God-honoring rhythm of conversation with our heavenly Father.

10 Prayer Tactics

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Pray the Psalms.
Read a psalm and stop to pray at any point along the way. "Thanks, God, for that reminder." "I'm not sure I understand, Father." "Wow – I can identify with that!" The psalms are full of prayers to get you going, and you will learn from the ancient ones how they prayed.

Pray in the car.
Turn off the radio, and turn your thoughts to God. Imagine Him sitting in the seat next to you. Visit with Him on your way to and from work each day. After all, He is indeed with you – prime time for a little one-on-one.

Pray at meals.
Take a moment to pray before you eat – at home or elsewhere. Thank God for the food, for His presence, and for the company around the table (if you're eating with others). You can pray aloud if you want, or bow your head and pray in silence – whatever seems right at the time.

Pray in private meetings.
Whether your meeting is impromptu or by appointment, pray before you start or pray when you're done. Or both. Not sure how anybody else might feel about it? Ask! "Do you mind if I pray…?"

Pray with your spouse or prayer partner.
There is nothing more powerful than praying with another person. "For where two or three are gathered in my name, there I am among them," Jesus said (Matthew 18:20). Be honest and transparent with each other and with God – it can be a sweet time.

Pray with a text.
Shoot a text to a friend offering up a prayer of praise or petition for this person in your life.

Pray by phone.
Call a friend to pray by phone. Or pray with a friend who calls you with a concern or need. It's like a conference call with God, because it's you, the Lord, and the other guy.

Pray with a journal.
Write out your prayers. It'll help you focus and slow down. And when you see that your prayer is answered, make a note of that, too.

Pray out loud.
Jesus apparently prayed this way often, since so many of His prayers have been recorded in Scripture. Even when you're alone, prayer sometimes seems more real when it's not just in your head.

Pray with an alarm.
Set a specific time with your phone alarm as a reminder to pray a few moments each day. It's an aid to discipline and consistency. Pretty soon you won't even need the alarm!

In short, pray anytime, anywhere, for any reason – alone or with others. With a little practice and intentionality, it'll become as natural as breathing.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

How To Pray: The Lord’s Prayer

How To Meditate on Gods Word a blog by Vince Miller

How To Pray: The Lord's Prayer

"The great people of the earth today are the people who pray."—S.D. Gordon.

"Pray then like this..."—Jesus, Matthew 6:9

Praying Like Jesus
The Lord's Prayer is a classic. Maybe you know it by heart. No worries if you don't, but a lot of folks do. The danger is that rote repetition can get in the way of remembering this elegant prayer's meaning and purpose. There's a reason it's called "The Lord's Prayer." Jesus taught it to His disciples as an example not of what to pray, but of how to pray:

"Pray then like this: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil."—Matthew 6:9-13

The 6 Building Blocks Of The Lord's Prayer

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So, I count six building blocks to keep in mind while conversing with God.

Block One | "Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name."
We acknowledge both our relationship with God (we are His children) and His authority. He reigns from heaven, and He is holy.

Block Two | "Your kingdom come."
We express grateful anticipation – the expectation that God's kingdom is at hand.

Block Three | "Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven."
We reflect a desire for God's will to be accomplished – everywhere and in every situation.

Block Four | "Give us this day our daily bread."
Note that Jesus uses the word "us." We ask not only for our own needs but also the needs of others.

Block Five | "And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors."
We ask God to forgive us for our missteps, even as we double check to make sure we've forgiven others who have wronged us.

Block Six | "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil."
We ask God to help us not sin, and to protect us from injury, illness or any other kind of harm. Note the plural language – "our," "we," "us" – the implication is that we can pray to God not only as individuals but also corporately with other believers.

Think of the Lord's Prayer essentially as an outline. Every portion can be expanded and personalized to reflect the specifics of your life, your family and friends, your wants and needs. God delights in hearing it all. So when you pray, carve out some time to be thorough. Here's what writer and speaker S.D. Gordon had to say about those who make prayer a priority:

"The great people of the earth today are the people who pray. I do not mean those who talk about prayer, but I mean those people who take time to pray. They have not time. It must be taken from something else. This something else is important, very important and pressing, but still less important and less pressing than prayer."—S.D. Gordon

Just do it. Sit down with your heavenly Father and pour out your heart. You'll be blessed, and so will He.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.

Keeping Peace

Unmoved a mens daily devotional by Vince Miller

Keeping Peace

"When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace."—Jimi Hendrix

"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God."—Jesus, Matthew 5:9

Relationship Require Peace Because They Are Valuable
Relationships are valuable in life. They are difficult to construct and easy to deconstruct. There are so many ways to sabotage your relationships. Here are some behaviors to avoid in order to keep relationships from being compromised, and keep peace with those around you.

8 Behaviors To Avoid To Keep Peace

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One | Triangulation rather than directly addressing.
Triangulation occurs when you share your issues about another person with anyone other than that individual. What you have done is to bring another into what is "your" perceived issue and often into an alliance with you against others. This does not solve the problem but enlarges the circle of conflict with individuals who were not part of the original dispute and who have no influence to resolve the conflict. The uninvolved party you've brought in by discussing with them now have a bias about the person you have a dispute with but without a way to resolve that bias since the issues is yours rather than theirs.

Two | Carbon copying emails to uninvolved people.
Of course, once you carbon copy anyone they become involved. This is usually a power play or a move to bring others over to your side, but it results in nothing good, besides enlarging the circle of mistrust and doubt. Remember that the larger the circle of people involved—passively or actively—the harder it is to resolve conflict. If your goal is to preserve relationships, you will resist any actions that widen the circle needlessly.

Three | Sharing second-hand information as factual.
Second-hand information is not usually actual information. At best, it is highly suspect because as second-hand information you don't know all the facts but just a few of the facts. There is no reason to share second or third-hand information if you care about others. It's no different than gossip. Often others don't need to know, and you usually don't have a good reason to share what you do know or have heard.

Four | Escalating small issues into more significant conflict.
When small disagreements are left unresolved, they have the opportunity to grow into more significant conflicts. Keeping short accounts with others is the key to keeping little things from escalating into more significant misunderstandings. As the scripture teaches, if you have an offense against a brother, go immediately to that brother and settle your accounts. It does not matter if you were responsible for the initial disagreement or your friend. Go and resolve it quickly.

Five | Ignoring issues that you should address.
Leaders who are conflict adverse fail to deal with issues they know are problematic and therefore allow the dysfunctions to spill into the life of others. This is the source of much pain on teams, in organizations, and with churches. When leaders choose not to confront issues, behaviors, or impending problems; these have a detrimental impact on the people and the culture.

Six | Failing to communicate the loving truth.
Truth should be shared graciously and only with the right people, but if you have issues, you need to share those issues in truth and love. Many relationships have failed because of sheltering people from truth or communicating half-truths because someone did not dare to be forthcoming. If you truly love someone, you will tell them the truth—not a half-truth or a lie to avoid friction or pain. Avoidance of sharing the truth always leads to more significant conflict in the future.

Seven | Demonizing those who disagree with you.
Have you ever met people who are your best friend until you disagree with them on some issue and then you become an enemy? It happens all the time in well-meaning Christian circles. You will be tempted to divide the world into good people and bad people or righteous and unrighteous. Life isn't that easy. Besides which group would you be in? Good and godly people can do and say unfortunate things, and they can disagree with your opinions, but you should never demonize them for doing so. Healthy individuals give others space, allow them to disagree without the friendship being at threatened or at risk of being terminated.

Eight | Owning other people's issues
This is another form of triangulation. Your problems are yours, and my issues are mine. I can give you counsel or take your counsel, but the issues are still either mine or yours. If I take up your problem, I get involved in a conflict that is not my own, and since it is not my issue, I cannot resolve it. You may do this out of friendship, but it does not work and frequently produces further conflict. Rather than taking up the issue of another, offer to mediate between the two parties and see if peace can be found.

Jesus commanded us to be peacemakers. That starts with those closest to us by not allowing issues to cloud our friendships. And where we see that happen whether it's us with us or others lets step in as peacemakers on behalf of Jesus.

Vince Miller Speaking All In

Vince Miller is a speaker, author, and mentor to men. He is an authentic and transparent leader who loves to communicate to audiences on the topics of mentorship, fathering, leadership and manhood. He has authored 16 books and small group curriculum for men and is the primary content creator of all Resolute materials. Contact Vince Miller here. His newest book is 20 Lessons That Build A Leader.