Do not strive with a man without cause, if he has done you no harm. (Proverbs 3:30)
You know them: If you say “up” they will say, “down”, if you say “white”, they will say “black”. There will always be those who struggle and contend for the sake of struggling and contending. Do not be such as these. “If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.”(1) Learn to listen without thinking of a reply. Listen with an honest ear. Be slow to contradict and challenge another’s view or opinion. Weigh the words of others before unloading your words onto them. Listen with a heart of compassion and an ear of mercy. Make your reply using gentle words, words of compassion. Do not take sides when there is no opposition. Do not respond to another’s well-thought-out idea impulsively. Do not strive from the cuff. If we fail to do these things, good ideas, plans, and direction will cease to come your way. If we learn to be good listeners, we will receive good information. If we strive without cause, we will be left alone.