Thought for the day 14 December

14 December
Negotiations have been extended regarding a post January deal with the EU. The poor negotiators! I wonder if they ever feel they are losing the will to live, going over and over the same things in ever smaller detail? But so many negotiations are like that: whether it’s a trade treaty, a peace treaty, arrangements between staff and employers, between members of a family with difficult/broken relationships. Sometimes (as in the UK-EU talks) there are only the parties for both/all sides involved, sometimes there is a third-party mediator trying to help the parties find common ground. We have probably all had experience of being involved in bi-lateral or multi-party negotiations in some aspect of life, and maybe too of being mediators between squabbling children or, worse-still, squabbling adults. It takes a lot of patience and determination (and sometimes a thick skin!) Thankfully, in all aspects of life there are people who are willing to be negotiators or mediators, and people who work at rebuilding trust between those who have fallen out (or worse)

Lord, in all sorts of areas of life people are trying to negotiate, or mediate, to come to agreements that all parties will buy into and own, to resolve conflict without it leading to violence or broken relationships. Thank you for those who take on such work voluntarily. Help us, when we are engaged in negotiations or mediation, to have stamina and patience, and be able to find ways to build trust

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