Your Daily Dose: Are You Gentle?
Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.
Are you known as a reasonable person? Are you willing to set aside rigidity for the cause of peacemaking? Are you willing to sideline your own rights in order to put another person first? Are you a “give and take” kind of person or do you mostly take?
The toughest aspect of this verse is that it is based on how other people perceive you rather than what you think of yourself. You may THINK that you’re a gentle person, but does anybody else agree with you? Does your spouse think you are gentle? How about your children? What would your neighbors say…or your friends…or your co-workers? Paul is talking about a gentleness that is obvious to everyone around you. Yikes.
Jesus, of course, is the ultimate model for gentleness. I often imagine how gentle He was with the woman at the well or the woman caught in adultery or with Zacchaeus or Peter or Judas or even the Roman Centurions who nailed Him to the cross. Every one of them messed up in a big way; yet, Jesus handled each of them with gentleness. He was firm but not harsh. He was deadly serious but not vindictive.
Gentleness, by the way, is not timidity. Nor is it blissful ignorance. It is simply a way of life that acknowledges that each and every person is made in the image of God, has inestimable worth, is loved by their Creator, and is worthy of compassion…even at their worst moments.
Jesus has been gentle with you, hasn't He? Perhaps it’s time that you pass that along to everybody else.
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