Talk or Give Up?

This 1-minute devotion offers 3 reasons people don't get along and 3 biblical solutions. #BibleLoveNotes #Bible

A friend suddenly stops communicating. You ask if you've offended her, and she refuses to talk about it. A relative is distant and angry but refuses your repeated attempts to discuss things. 

If others refuse to talk, we have to move on. But we should never be the ones to cut off communication (Luke 17:3-4; Romans 12:18).

Selfish people:
1. Refuse to discuss relationship problems or refuse to discuss them with an open mind.
2. Refuse to consider the desires of others.
3. Expect their desires to come first.

Christians are told in Philippians 2:3-5 to "have the same mindset as Christ":
1. Doing nothing selfish or conceited.
2. Humbly valuing others above ourselves.
3. Being concerned for the needs and desires of others, not simply our own.

Proverbs 27:17 says, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” 

This sharpening process is noisy, abrasive and humbling at times. But, with God's help, we can learn to get along.

Have you given up on someone in your life? See the "Additional Notes" below and check out the Bite Size Bible Study related to this devotion: "Don't Be the One To Give Up.
Additional Notes:

This 1-minute devotion offers 3 reasons people don't get along and 3 biblical solutions. #BibleLoveNotes #Bible↪  Sometimes we must agree to disagree. We need not have the same views about every subject, but we do need to agree about how to treat each other.
1 Peter 4:8: "Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins."

↪  We must avoid bitterness. See 8 Steps to Overcome Bitterness.

↪  If someone becomes verbally abusive or angry, we may need to take a break, letting them know we want to talk when they calm down.
Proverbs 20:3: "It is to one's honor to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to quarrel."

↪  Philippians 2:3-4 says we need to be humble and value others above ourselves, not simply looking out for our own interests but also to the interests of others. However, this passage does not say we should ignore our own interests. People tend to fall into two camps—those who have a tendency to ignore the interests of others and those who have a tendency to ignore their own interests. We must do neither. Please see A Wheel, Not a List.

↪  If we have a problem with a non-family member, we need to treat them kindly, but it's not realistic to think we can be close friends with everyone. See When We Don't Really Like Fellow Believers.

↪  There's nothing wrong with avoiding selfish, critical, immature, hypocritical, and/or ungodly people, especially if they profess to be Christians (1 Corinthians 15:33). Some people have unhealthy or ungodly expectations in relationships. See 4 Types of People God Tells Us To Avoid.

↪  God is the One responsible for placing us in our particular family, and He never does anything without good purposes. Family relationships call for the highest effort and greatest grace. See When Boundaries are Bitter Barriers

Bible Love Notes


  1. Thank you, Gail. God has been working in me in many, many ways in this regard--and He's still working! Thank you for this encouragement and challenge.

  2. I love how this says that regardless if other people stop talking, that we should never give up on them. What a great reminder of our God...when we might be distant or stop talking to Him...that He never gives up on US! Oh, that we might emulate our wonderful Lord!

  3. Oh and I've been there and don't like not making relationships right. Thank you Gail for always hitting the nail on the head in such a sensitive way. I hope you are doing well.

  4. I have a question. What do you do when you're only child disowned you and your parents and after over two years gets married without saying a word? It hurts me. I didn't do anything to deserve this treatment.

    1. Dear Confused and Crying,
      I wish I had an easy answer for you. There is a huge trend, at least in America, for adult children to treat their parents poorly, to judge them hypocritically, and to expect things of them that they don't expect of themselves. Many parents are marginalized, neglected, and mistreated by adult children. But that trend goes even further in many cases due to the narcissistic attitudes of many younger adults.

      Many, many parents of adult children are suffering as you are, some of them hated by their children - children who they loved and enjoyed. And many of these parents are Christians who raised their children in the nurture of the Lord.

      I not only hear from hurting parents via email and comments, but I personally know such parents.

      I believe much of it has to do with a culture that teaches us to love ourselves and teaches us that we are entitled to things we don't deserve. And the younger generation is more influenced by the culture than the older generation for the most part.

      It's another way the Bible is being undermined in our culture. Scripture tells children of all ages to honor their parents, even parents who were not good parents. But in today's America, many good, loving parents are being dishonored. That's one reason I write about it frequently on Bible Love Notes. I have an archive of devotions on honoring parents under my "Subjects Archive."

      I encourage you to seek the Lord, asking Him how to handle your particular situation. If God convicts you of doing something wrong, repent and confess it, but don't accept blame for the situation unless it comes from God. Then ask God how you should react to the ongoing mistreatment of your daughter. Don't share your story except when led by God - there are many well-meaning friends who will give you poor advice or blame you when God has not blamed you. Our culture tends to blame parents.

      Let God comfort your heart as you remember that He is also a Father who has loved many of His children who reject Him. He does understand.

      As I write this, I pray for you that God will give you strength and joy and comfort. It's reasonable to pray this because we serve a God who is able to do more than we ask or imagine. He will bind up your broken heart, if you let Him.

      In Christ,

    2. Thanks 🙏🏼Gail. This reading is such a blessing to me. It's very suitable with my current situation. I cannot talk or communicate with my husband because it always triggers him to yell at me and verbally abusive. I cannot talk, responses or ask any question. He keeps saying keep your mouth shut. But when I always be quiet and no response, he also get angry and say you never ask me and you never care and concern about me. I really don't know what to do. At time, I want to give up on him and the marriage but the only thing that keep me going and endure this are our children. I cannot talk about our relationship. He always get angry regardless whether I response or not. What should I do?

    3. Dear Dino,
      I am so sorry. This must be very difficult for you.
      I have prayed for you and asked God to give you strength and wisdom in your situation.
      Is there someone you can meet with for prayer? Someone in your church - an older woman or your pastor?
      I strongly recommend that you share your concerns with someone who will pray for you. If you can't think of anyone who might do this, ask God to show you. I know He doesn't want you to handle this alone.
      God bless you.