Conflict in marriage is inevitable, but conflict isn't necessarily a bad thing. Conflict can be productive and fruitful and even help us grow. It can bring issues of blindness to the surface: "Really? That's how you feel when I say that?"
It can be the great revealer of past hurts: "That's why you’re so sensitive whenever that topic comes up. Thank you for sharing that."
It can help us learn to understand each other.
Viewing "conflict" as all negative is to assume that our relationship and knowledge of each other is completely perfect and that there is no growing to do. No marriage is like that.
There's one attitude that will determine whether conflict is a cure or a cancer in our relationship, however, and it's directly related to pride.
Proverbs 18:2 tells us, "A fool does not delight in understanding, but only in revealing his own mind."
If I don't want to be a fool, then whenever I am in conflict with my spouse I have to seek understanding more than I seek victory. I have to seek understanding more than I seek to be understood. I have to work twice as hard when I'm listening as I do when I'm speaking. (Seriously, who really does that? But that's what the Bible calls us to do!) My first goal should be, "How can I understand what my wife is thinking/feeling/believing right now?"
[Read the rest of the article at For the Family.]