01/31

Super Gentleness

“…be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men.” Titus 3:2

One of the fruits of the spirit Paul lists in Galatians 5 is gentleness. As with any fruit of the spirit, we understand that gentleness is a character quality developed in us as a result of being yielded to the Holy Spirit. The Greek word for gentleness is praotes, meaning meekness or mildness. To be gentle with another person requires strength and maturity, especially when the other person is at fault for a wrong doing, a wrong doctrine, or having a wrong attitude! Responding to such a one takes power from the Holy Spirit to respond with controlled strength instead of an unrighteous anger, an overpowering dominance, or hurtful retaliation.

“A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.” Proverbs 15:1 NLT

Meekness does its best to see others restored and helped. Often people who make wrong choices are lacking in some area of their soul. In dealing with hurting people, realize they will sometimes bite the hand of the one who is reaching out to help them. When someone is in error, it is not uncommon for that person to attack the one who would hold him or her accountable for their wrongdoing. Meekness puts the need of the other person above a desire to be right or to be justified.

“Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.” Galatians 6:1

Being gentle or meek comes from surrendering to the Holy Spirit instead of letting our flesh dominate to react in error. Being in the right doesn’t give anyone the right to retaliate, humiliate, or manipulate the one who did the wrong. Meekness doesn’t want to rub someone’s face in the mire of their own smelly mess. The privilege we have in restoring those at fault is to show mercy, a mercy that Christ has shown to us. It is the mercy and grace of God that enables and empowers us to keep the ways of the Lord. Outside of his help, we can be tempted and fall.

Meekness is not weakness. Meekness doesn’t erase responsibility, avoid accountability, ignore pride, or overlook rebellion. Meekness does not avoid confrontation, fear opinion, or permit bad behavior. To develop meekness in your life, stay yielded to the Lord. Use discernment, wisdom, and stay humble so you can help others come to the truth.

Application: Don’t allow yourself to be pushed into a split-second reaction. Take time to respond to a situation from the spirit.

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