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When to Back Off

Our family is learning a lot about lacrosse these days. It's a relatively new sport in our part of the country, but our younger son plays it. We're learning the various techniques for handling the ball, attacking the opponent, scoring goals, and defending one's net.

In a recent game as I watched our son play his position, I was confused by the movements he was making on the field. After the game I asked, "What were those moves you were making out there when your opponent was guarding you?" He replied, somewhat sheepishly, "Oh, I was just trying to avoid letting that big guy crush me!"

I laughed with him: "It's always a good idea to know how to keep from getting crushed!"

I have had to learn a similar strategy in ministry: There are times when the best way to deal with conflict is to avoid it in the first place.

When I was a boy trying to get along with kids in the schoolyard, my father used to tell me, "The easiest fights to win are the ones you stay out of." He was right, of course. But that's ...

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