You know “that one woman.” She’s the one who seems to create the most problems and consume the most time in your life. She might be in your small group, on your ministry team, or in your church family. She seems to approach you at the most inopportune time.
“That one woman” might have a variety of names:
Whiney Whitney has a complaint about everything. She doesn’t usually want to be part of a solution; she just wants to voice her (negative) opinions to whoever will listen.
Answers Annie knows just about everything about everything. She sounds as if she wants to take charge, but she doesn’t want the responsibility.
Gossip Guilda talks about anything that shouldn’t be openly discussed. She betrays confidence, speculates to fill in gaps of unknown information, and generates concern where none is needed.
Bully Betty is mean-spirited. Sometimes her mistreatment of others is obvious, but other times it’s a quick, thoughtless word of judgment or eye roll and disgusted sigh.
Crisis Cathy needs you nearly 24/7. She’s in chronic desperate need. You want to meet her needs, but you’re beginning to wonder if you’re in an unhealthy codependent relationship.
Selfish Sally wants everything to be convenient to her schedule, priorities, and preferences. She won’t say “go ahead without me.” She needs to be included in every plan.
Doubting Debby is never quite sure about anything. She is certain someone will get her feelings hurt or end up in trouble. She wants to be sure everything is done “properly” but isn’t sure what that means.
Let’s face it: life would be much easier without people!
But, that’s not a possibility. We have to find a way to deal with difficult people and situations.
Be flexible. You might need to lower your expectations of “that one woman.” You can want the best for and from her, but if she’s consistent in her behavior – whether you like the behavior of not – you shouldn’t be surprised when she behaves exactly the way she usually behaves.
Be fair. You need to honestly consider how much of your time is spent dealing with, discussing, and thinking about “that one woman.” If you subtract the percentage of time you spend on her, how much time remains for all the other women around you? Are you cheating others of your commitment and relationship?
Be firm. Trust God through mentoring or confrontation – whatever approach He guides you through. “That one woman’s” response to you might not change until your response to her changes. Don’t assume you know the best way to handle the situation. God knows the details better than you.
Be fine-tuned. Personality conflicts aren’t just about “that one woman.” She might get along well everyone else, and you just don’t get it. Someone else’s “that one woman” is likely different than yours. We clash with others for a variety of reasons. God created you in His image, and He also created “that one woman.”
Be followed. Know that as much as you want to teach “that one woman” a lesson, God has a lesson for you, too. You are an example to others. People are watching when you least expect it.
Remember, you are likely “that one woman” to someone, too.