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Fueling the Fire

A campfire is one of fall’s jewels. If you’ve ever been in charge of keeping the fire going, you know it must be stoked, but it also needs fuel. You lay on another piece of wood and the fire grows, getting hotter and hotter.

Proverbs 26:20 compares fueling a quarrel to fueling a fire. When we gossip about a conflict with someone, we add fuel to the fire. We flame our ill feelings; our frustration burns hotter and hotter. If our words get back to the person with whom we’re in conflict, their ill feelings grow hotter as well. Our gossip makes the fire between us grow.

“If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over. But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses’” (Matthew 18: 15-16).

The next time you find yourself in conflict with someone else, resist gossiping about the situation and follow God’s plan instead. The conflict will likely die down. Even if the other person does not want to let the fire die, God will still allow it to die in you.

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