Spirit-Led Woman

Want to receive SpiritLed Woman by email? Sign up here

The SpiritLed Woman podcast is empowering women weekly to follow their purpose in Christ and boldly walk in faith. Listen at charismapodcastnetwork.com.

Adjusting and Adapting Our Approach 

Sometimes in relating to others it is necessary to make adjustments in our approach to handling issues that involve them. We determine what these adjustments are by getting to know them. First Thessalonians 5:12 says, "Get to know those who labor among you [recognize them for what they are, acknowledge and appreciate and respect them all]."

Paul is referring here primarily to people who are over us in leadership, but I believe this instruction can be applied to all our relationships. The more time we take to get to know those we are in relationship with, the better we will be able to understand them and make the required adjustments.

When I first began walking with the Lord, I was a very stubborn woman. I felt as if all the problems I was experiencing were the result of other people, and if they would just adapt to me, the majority of my problems would disappear.

Romans 12:16 quickly set me straight. It says, "Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty (snobbish, high-minded, exclusive), but readily adjust yourself to [people, things] and give yourselves to humble tasks. Never overestimate yourself or be wise in your own conceits." In other words, you and I need to be ready and willing to adjust to others—not wait for them to adapt to us.

I had to apply this verse to my relationship with my general manager many years ago. She has always been very respectful and kind, but we have two very different personalities.

She has a melancholy type of personality, and I have a choleric one. This means that she is very detailed and desires plenty of information and time in order to make a quality decision. I, on the other hand, am less concerned with the details and more interested in making a quick decision.

Before I got to know her as well as I do now, I would talk to her about different issues and expect her to give me a quick evaluation of the situation. As a result, she would become very upset and sometimes even cry.

Her response frustrated me. Finally, one day I asked her, "Why are you crying? I am just asking a question. What is the problem?" She said: "I feel pressured—I feel as if you are forcing me to give you an answer that I don't have yet. I need time to think."

Now, I could have taken the attitude, I'm the boss, and I don't have to put up with this. But I certainly wouldn't have been exhibiting the love of Christ: "Love endures long and is patient and kind. ... It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God's love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way" (1 Cor. 13:4-5).

To walk in the love of Christ, I had to adapt and adjust my way of handling these types of situations with Roxane. I had to give her more time to make a decision.

The fact that I can make a decision faster than she can doesn't mean I'm better—it just means we're different. If I had chosen not to change, I would have missed out on many years of her faithful assistance, which has been a tremendous blessing to both our ministry and me.

People Change From the Inside Out 

The bottom line is that all of us are uniquely different, and God created us that way on purpose. I have come to the realization that it is a waste of our time and energy to try to make people what we think they ought to be. We need to learn to make allowances for them—to give them time and space to make mistakes and grow at their own pace.

The Bible says you change, "[Not in your own strength] for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire], both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight" (Phil. 2:13). If you and I don't have the power to change the flaws in our own lives, then we certainly don't have the power to change them in others. Only God can change people, and the changes He brings—which are permanent—come from the inside out.

I encourage you to give up finding fault with others and to instead look for the best in them. Make a decision today that you are going to submit to God and begin walking in love. When you do, your relationships will improve, and you will enjoy all the people God has placed in your life!

Joyce Meyer is a New York Times best-selling author and founder of Joyce Meyer Ministries, Inc. She has authored nearly 100 books, including Battlefield of the Mind and Change Your WordsChange Your Life. She hosts the Enjoying Everyday Life radio and TV programs. For more information, visit joycemeyer.org. To read past columns in Charisma by Joyce, visit charismamag.com/meyer.

Draw closer to God. Experience the presence of the Holy Spirit every month as you read Charisma magazine. Sign up now to get Charisma for as low as $1 per issue.

Get to know the Holy Spirit and how to interact with Him on a daily basis. Learn to enter God's presence and hear His voice clearly for yourself! Go deeper in your faith with Life in the Spirit and change your life and destiny. Are you ready to start your journey?

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
View/Add Comments
  • Hillary Clinton

    What if Hillary Clinton Wins the White House?

    Polls have Mrs. Clinton leading by 11 points. The church must be prepared.

  • Holy Spirit prophetic

    7 Ways to Cultivate Sensitivity to the Holy Spirit

    Too many of God's people are led by fear, doubt, man-pleasing, presumption, assumption, idols ...

  • What if You Could Save $500 This Week?

    What if You Could Save $500 This Week?

    Start saving for emergencies today with the $500 Savings Challenge by brightpeak financial. It's chock-full of inspiration, great savings tips and the motivation to make a dent in your savings—for real! Go to 500savingschallenge.com to sign up!

  • Guarding the gates of your heart will keep the demonic and evil out of your life.

    Keep the Demonic Out of Your Life With This Oft-Overlooked Spiritual Warfare Strategy

    The enemy knows his limitations. Limit him.

  • Highway exit signs

    Prophetic Word: Watch for the Exit Signs to Light Up This Season

    Don't be afraid to get your hands dirty in the harvest fields. The "barnyard anointing" ...

  • Jezebel puppets

    10 Ways to Spot Jezebel's Spiritually Slick Undercover Con Artists

    It's time to stop tolerating Jezebel in all its many manifestations.

  • Finger pointing

    The Accuser vs. Donald Trump—and Us All

    This isn't a political persuasion piece, but a current-event case study in the strategies of ...

  • Daily scripture reading, meditation and prayer can seem elusive with your busy schedule.

    10 Small Steps to Deeper Intimacy With Holy Spirit in Your Quiet Times

    If deep quiet times seem just out of your reach with your busy schedule, try one of these ...

  • Lance Wallnau

    Lance Wallnau Is on Fire and on Target With His Insights on the Culture and This Election

    I'm sickened by the self-righteous, weak-kneed "evangelicals" who want to be liked by ...

  • Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Continue Your Journey with the Holy Spirit

    Follow God on the most fulfilling journey of your life with Encounter the Holy Spirit! Break away from past hurts and press into the One who wants a personal encounter with you.

  • Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Dream the Unimaginable In His Presence

    Reach your full potential and be led by His Spirit. In His Presence takes you to a deeper understanding of who God is and how he communicates with us.

  • Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Set Your Spirit on Fire

    Receive the power and gifts that come through the Holy Spirit Baptism. Don’t go empty-handed; accept all that He has for you! His power is available to those who ask.

  • Put on the Full Armor of God

    Put on the Full Armor of God

    Break every stronghold with the power of the Holy Spirit. Use the power of your tongue to declare and decree the Word of God. Witness heaven move on your behalf.

Use Desktop Layout
Charisma Magazine — Empowering believers for life in the Spirit