Institute for Global Engagement Search


Relational Diplomacy

Principles of Engagement

IGE’s relational diplomacy is undergirded by principles of engagement developed by our founders Bob and Margaret Ann Seiple and president emeritus Chris Seiple.

Know Him

  • Know your maker—seek to understand God’s heart and make God’s passions yours. Know your faith at its deepest and richest best, and enough about your neighbor’s faith in order to respect it.
  • Sense God’s timing. Practice patience. Be brave enough to engage without excuse, strong enough to refuse recklessness.

Know Yourself

  • Understand your strengths—and weaknesses—and how they impact your relationships. Do no harm.
  • Cultivate the characteristics of the Biblical metaphors for Global Engagement: the street- wise common sense of the snake, the gentle humility of the dove, the wise statesmanship of the ambassador.
  • Pray for the full armor of God. Be transparent, predictable, accountable, and responsible. Make hope tangible in the present. Take no credit. Give away learnings. Act incarnationally and establish the worth of the Gospel so that the truth might be revealed.

Know His World

  • This is God’s world. God is deeply in love with it. We “plant and water,” God brings the increase. We “prepare the horse for battle; but victory rests with the Lord.” Let God keep score.
  • Know history—political and cultural, yours and theirs. Know all of the questions, not just some of the answers. Understand geo-political complexity and local nuance. But realize that God is already there … recognize that the adjective “intractable” is an insult to a sovereign Lord.
  • Pray over the land. Pray for discernment to take place, for wisdom to reveal itself. Pray with intentionality. Pray specifically for key individuals involved.
  • Find partners. Who has been trustworthy, credible, persevering, and relevant? Build relationships that endure. “Whoever is not against us is for us.” Remember, the Commandment to love was given before the Commission to go.
  • Act comprehensively. What is the art of the possible? Put yourself in everybody else’s shoes . Develop a policy and a supporting strategy around objectives formed in faith. Continuously reassess both policy and concomitant strategy.
  • And remember: global engagement has a face. A difference is made, a plan is enacted, a transformation takes place one life at a time … a life already made in the image of God.


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