At youth group this week we’ve been learning about conflict resolution. We all experience interpersonal conflict at some point in our lives.
We get in arguments with siblings about using the bathroom in the morning.
We get in heated exchanges with coworkers over what we think is best for a project.
We get in frosty stalemates with spouses over what was said or what went unsaid.
As long as we’re interacting with other people, we’re going to experience interpersonal conflict. So in order to live the lives for which we were created, we need to learn how to resolve conflict in a God-honoring manner.
And Buzz and Woody can help us learn how to do that.
I love all of the Toy Story movies but the first one will always hold a special place in my heart. I remember seeing the movie with my family and being thoroughly amazed at the talent of Pixar. I’d never seen a digitally animated movie before, much less one that was so hilarious and heartwarming.
The interpersonal conflict between Buzz and Woody stands at the center of Toy Story‘s plot. Buzz is the new toy in the room and Woody is jealous. Woody is worried that he’s losing both Andy and the other toys. Instead of resolving that conflict in a God-honoring way, though, Woody gives Buzz the cold shoulder and both he and Buzz end up falling outside.
Woody could have saved himself a lot of trouble by going to Buzz and resolving the conflict. It would have made for a shorter and more boring movie, but it would have made life easier for them both.
Woody could have approached Buzz and attempted to resolve their conflict (Matthew 5:23-24)
Woody could have admitted that he hadn’t treated Buzz very well (Matthew 7:3-5).
Woody could have approached Buzz in humility (Philippians 2:3-4).
Woody could have explained what he observed, said how it made him feel and tried to live at peace with Buzz. (Romans 12:18).
That’s a great process Woody could have gone through to resolve his conflict with Buzz. It’s also a great process that we can go through when we experience conflict with others.
We’re always going to experience conflict but, if we can learn how to properly resolve it, then we’ll be able to say to everyone, “You’ve got a friend in me.”
What helps you resolve your conflicts in a Godly manner?