Those are my boys goofing around at our family photo session. But you know, in all seriousness , if we aren’t careful when we are dealing with others, things can get quickly out of hand!
Somebody is probably living this right now! I know I have had situations quickly go south when that was never my intent. I think these next words from Paul are especially ones I need to heed.
Paul has told us to rejoice (Phil 4:4) and then he says, “Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.” (Phil 4:5)
And I think rejoicing and gentleness are tied together.
For as I focus on how much I have to be thankful for, and set my heart to rejoice, I can be more gentle with others in this world.
What if we were more gentle? What if we Christians were known for our gentleness?
The Enduring Word app describes this gentleness as “letting the Lord fight my battles”.
In essence, because of all the Lord has given (that I did not deserve) when He saved my soul, it is no longer necessary for me to win every battle with others.
I don’t have to force my way or even defend myself to others. I’ve been bought with the highest of price.
My identity is in Christ, so I am driven to love others as He has loved me.
I should want to approach others as Jesus did the woman at the well- with gentleness. He spoke truth but He did do in a kind and gentle way.
And to be completely honest here, this whole gentleness thing remains an area of needed improvement for me.
For years I excused my lack of gentleness as just being passionate about my beliefs about right and wrong.
Oh but friends, how many times did the way I say something (not so gently) prevent the other person from receiving the truth I was trying to share?! 😩 …more than I wish to admit!
But those times, I spent in prayer prior to these situations, remembering just how far the Lord has brought me out of the pit of my own sin, the more He has toned me down. It’s amazing how much more effective a gentle spirit can be!
God’s ways are always better than our flesh-filled ways. We can take that to the bank!
Oh friends, May our gentleness be known to all men!
Isn’t this letter to the Philippians good? It’s so full of wisdom, that when applied, can spare us all kinds of anguish and draw others to the Light within us!
Let’s be doers and not just hearers of the truth. May God help us be known for our gentleness!