Tuesday, June 7, 2016

The Overlooked Fruit of the Spirit: Gentleness

Gentleness is overlooked. Harshness becomes more common. But meek is not weak.
I always thought I was gentle. When reading through lists of virtues in the New Testament, gentleness never caught my attention. As a young man I prayed regularly against lust. I fought pride. I strove to ward off sloth. These deadly sins comprised a three-headed monster I knew I must oppose. But somewhere along the way, while I engaged in a frontal assault against my Cerberus, a sneaky little sin slipped out of my heart and attacked me from the rear. He goes by many names: harshness, brashness, and domineering are some of them. He’s neither meek nor gentle.
So how did this sneaky little sin catch my attention? A dear friend did something brave; he told me I could be harsh and intimidating. So harsh, in fact, he wasn’t sure he could serve with me on our church’s elder team. His words stunned me. I couldn’t believe it. Yet I couldn’t not believe it. This brother is wise, godly, and I knew he wanted the best for me and for the church we both love.
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