Overlook…not Confront!

When I have a conflict with someone, do I always need to confront them? No you don’t…in fact we should not confront people for every offense, every time we feel someone has wronged us but instead be a peacemaker who is be willing to over look the offense and offer grace and forgiveness.

Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs. Proverbs 19:11 nlt

Overlook in this context means to forgive, take away, formally, pass. over, i.e., remove guilt, and often associated punishment from a person who has sinned or done wrong (2Sa 12:13)[1]

Let’s be clear on this overlooking then doesn’t mean to AVOID dealing with the conflict or offense, but making to deliberate choice to forgive, extend grace and continue in the relationship.

We should overlook when the conflict is caused because of our wrong attitudes, assumptions or errors in communication.

We should overlook when the other person’s actions are not a sinful pattern of life, and has not caused harm to you or them.

Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Colossians 3:13 nlt

When legitimate complaints within the community arise, we are urged to forgiveone another. Paul employs a special verb for forgive (‘cancelled the debts’ in, Lk. 7:42) used elsewhere of God’s gracious giving or forgiving (Rom. 8:32; 1 Cor. 2:12; Eph. 4:32). The present tense makes it clear that this forgiveness is to be unceasing, even unwearying (Mt. 18:22).

 We demonstrate God’s grace when we refuse to hold grudges against those who hurt us. After all, God did that for us.    Charles Swindoll


[1] Swanson, J. (1997). Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains : Hebrew (Old Testament) (electronic ed.). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc.


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