Girl to Girl Talk: How to Deal With Difficult Co-Workers and Be a Peacemaker
Written by Christi Given | January 6, 2018
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This week, a PI Girl had an issue with a co-worker who wasn’t very nice, and her question is how to handle difficult people. This is not an easy situation, especially when you have to work with someone every day. On one hand, Jesus tells us to love our enemies, and on the other hand, we don’t want to be fake to people.
One thing I can say is don’t be overly nice to the point where you never stand up for yourself. Do not allow people to make you a doormat. If you don’t have the courage to say something, ask the Holy Spirit to give you the words. For example, you can say something like “I don’t feel that you are treating me very kindly and I treat you nicely. I would appreciate mutual respect so we can work together in peace.” If the person continues being rude or bullying you, you should report it to your manager or boss immediately.
Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. (1 Peter 3:9)
We don’t want to retaliate and return evil for evil. Do not respond harshly because the Bible says in the book of Proverbs that a gentle answer turns away wrath, and that if we react harshly we will get a negative response. We want to be peacemakers and love people regardless of how they act toward us. Some of the most difficult people are the most broken people. It takes spiritual maturity to look past poor behavior. I am not making an excuse for their actions, but Jesus calls us to love even our enemies.
Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.” (Matthew 18:22)
We should learn the balance of treating people kindly while also forgiving but having self- respect and self-worth. We don’t want to operate out of our flesh or emotions, or count tallies on people’s harm toward us. Jesus calls us to forgive 7 times 70 and that we must turn from bitterness. I challenge you to smile and love the co-worker or peer at work who is jealous, rude or ignores you. Just smile and hold your head up high.
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. (Proverbs 15:1)
A quote that inspired me once about life and people that applies to this type of issue is “healed people heal people, and hurt people hurt people.” Keep this in mind when you are dealing with challenging employees. Remember that God is always with you, will defend you and sees your heart. Do not give up on being too kind or nice. God will reward you for turning the other cheek.
Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the LORD means safety. (Proverbs 29:25)
Remember that sometimes the enemy can operate through people, so it is important to put on the full armor of God (Ephesians 6), and to stand firm against the enemies’ devices and schemes by reading the Word. Do not waver in fear or doubt around people (Proverbs 29:25). God hasn’t given us a spirit of fear, but of faith. The only one we should fear is God. Remember that prayer is effective and powerful and can demolish strongholds on people, and spiritual battles can be won through communicating to God.
For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds… (2 Corinthians 10:4)
Your Abba Father loves you and wants you to shine your light in the dark places. Remember, not everyone knows the love of Christ and not everyone has a stable home. Sometimes people take stuff out on others if they are stressed, which is no excuse, but try to be forgiving and compassionate. Ask others how you can pray (if allowed to), and also ask how others are doing in love. If someone is operating out of pure evil, and continues in any kind of emotional abuse, then it needs to be reported.
Ask God for wisdom and discretion and make sure you seek the Lord regarding each situation. Every scenario can be different. I pray that God helps you to love the person who is giving you a hard time at work. God works it all for our good (Romans 8), even when we cannot understand everything. Just trust God and take your burdens to Him. He fights our battles and knows everything that is coming against us or for us.
We love you, PI Girls!
If you have any questions or comments, write them below!