4 Tips From Psalm One for Dealing with Mean People

A world filled with kindness and altruism would be wonderful, wouldn’t it? But it is a sad fact that we live in a world in which malice and selfishness reign supreme. And where malicious gossip and slander cause untold pain and anguish.

Some people feed off of meanness, sarcasm, and tearing others down. From childhood to old age, we encounter them everywhere. In schools, offices, factories, stores, and families. So it’s crucial that we learn how to deal with them, and also how to protect ourselves against their attacks.

4 Tips for dealing with mean people

Keep in mind that the aim of these tips is a peaceful reconciliation. Strive toward that and pray for it. Guard your heart so that you’ll remain a loving and peaceful person, always striving to do what is right.

1. Take protective measures

When your social circle or social media starts filling with negativity or gossip, it’s prudent to pull back. Otherwise it could bring you harm and damage your walk with Christ. And you risk getting pulled into a vicious cycle of gossip and slander.

Also remember that mean people have little respect for you and your personal information. If you can’t avoid them, be polite and gracious in your dealings with them. But guard your privacy. With them, it often becomes a case of what you say can and will be used against you.

Psalm One instructs us not to walk with the wicked, nor stand with sinners, nor sit with mockers. So step away from people who engage in unkind, negative behavior. Especially when you or others become a target of unkindness and evil.

How happy is the one who does not walk in the advice of the wicked or stand in the pathway with sinners or sit in the company of mockers!

Psalm 1:1 CSB

2. Strive to behave as Christ would

Next the Psalmist invites us to meditate on God’s word. Which is next to impossible when involved in a circle of negativity and gossip. So back away from it and draw close to God. Dig into his word and learn to walk in his ways.

Follow Christ’s command to bless those who curse you, and pray for those who mistreat you. Love your enemies and forgive them for their lack of love.

Ask the Lord to grant you the grace, wisdom, and capability to respond in love or remain silent. And pray that he will make you an instrument of peace and restoration – not division.

All of this is difficult to put into practice. And often when we do, the situation remains the same. The mean person or persons don’t change, and sometimes get even worse.

3. Draw close to God and rely on his help

It would easier to throw in the towel and act like them. But the Christian walk is not an easy road. The goal isn’t having our problems solved, but becoming more like Christ.

Trials, troubles, and difficult people are often the instruments God uses to change us. He allows them because he wants us to grow in faith and character.

Instead, his delight is in the Lord’s instruction, and he meditates on it day and night. He is like a tree planted beside flowing stream that bears its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.

Psalm 1:2-3 CSB

But Psalm One also delivers a promise. If you delight in God’s word, it says, he will firmly plant you. He’ll make you fruitful in your Christian walk, and your leaf will not wither. You will continue to grow.

Your trials might continue. Problems might increase. And people could become nastier. But your heart will be at peace because you’re doing what is right. And that God will make prosper and grow, even in the midst of troubles.

4. Ask for help

You don’t have to face these unpleasant situations alone. Ask for help, counsel, and prayer, without naming your adversary or giving too many details. Don’t stoop to their level.

But most of all remember that God’s loving care is constant. He will work things out for your good – and help you stay on the right path.

The best way to handle difficult relationships is to give them over to God. He can manage them far better than we ever could. And he can use even the most difficult situations for our good.

Distressed man by StockSnap | Social icons by geralt | Young woman by Liza Summer.

11 thoughts on “4 Tips From Psalm One for Dealing with Mean People

  1. Amen Sheila. We all have those intimate hurtful struggles, and it hurts most when it is in our own family (We’ve been through it in the past and are back in the wringer today). Your last point, “Ask for help.” is the hardest sometimes. I do trust God but trusting enough to ask someone else is complicated but worth it if we ask the right people. Blessings

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m sorry for the challenges, but I know you live out these truths. God is faithful; His very presence is a comfort. But I have to tell you–asking for help is hard! Thanks for these great reminders of what we can do to be anchored to our Lord.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I think you’ve threaded the needle graciously here – being honest about the reality of life while also protecting the privacy of your family. Prayers for you and them in this difficult time.


    1. Thank you so much Annie. That is so encouraging, as it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever written. And thank you so much for yours prayers for us and our family. We really need them.


  4. “The only way to handle the unwanted is to give it over to God.” Amen, Sheila! God WILL use this hurtful time for his glory, because you are trusting him and prayerfully desiring to encourage others through your experience. I will be praying specifically about the situation too!


    1. Thank you so much Nancy. It has been a time of going through the wringer for us – and so much more for our son. Our kids both went into marriage with “divorce is not an option.” So none of us ever expected this. It has helped to realize that in many ways this has been like a death in the family – and that a period of grieving is necessary. Thank you for your prayers, and know that I continue to pray with you over your hubby’s health struggles.


    1. Thank you Lisanne! And I say the same about yours. I’ve been somewhat MIA from WordPress lately. It was hard enough just getting through the daily routine. But I will get back into reading blogs once again – I glean so much support and wisdom through them!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m praying for your family at this difficult time. It’s good to hear you’ve got a good support network around you.


    1. Thank you Robert. And yes the support and prayer we have received has been phenomenal. We’ve got a wonderful church home here and are so grateful!!


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