Gently please…


I was reading my Bible the other day and this verse stopped me in my tracks…

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Gentleness…

Mild mannered.  Even-tempered.  Pleasant.  Kind.

Consistently…

After all, if our gentleness is supposed to be ‘evident to all’, it has to be consistently displayed.  Not just brought out for special occasions.  Or special people.  Or special situations.  Or only when we feel like it.

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We all know people who are consistently the opposite of gentle.  They aren’t pleasant to be around.

I know there have been far too many times where I haven’t shown gentleness.  I feel terrible about it almost immediately.  I always wish I could turn back time just long enough to do it over.  To do it better.  To do it right.

It’s always easier to do it right the first time than it is to fix the damage done by doing it wrong.

And doing it right the first time isn’t easy in the first place.

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Gentleness means making a conscious choice to be kind every single day.  Sometimes multiple times a day.  It means choosing and practising self-control.  It means doing the right thing, and being the right kind of person, no matter what the situation.

I recently started working with troubled young people living in family group home situations.  I’ve only worked a few shifts but I’ve routinely been defied, cursed at, insulted, taunted, punched, kicked, and even bitten.  Gentleness is not the order of the day.  Each time, I have a choice… respond in kind or respond with gentleness.  Firmness, tempered with gentleness.

I don’t know about you but I need help with that.  I need God’s help to do in me what I’m unable to do on my own.  That doesn’t mean I don’t participate in the process, it just means that I lean on a perfect God to do in a very imperfect me what I’m unable to do in myself, by myself.

Gently, of course…

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