Gentle Like a Lamb

It’s a virtue.

It’s a weapon.

It requires true patience and compassion.

What is this “it”? Gentleness.

During the month of November, I’ve been studying gentleness as a fruit of the Spirit. The first thing I thought when the month began was that gentleness was a bit like patience: it’s a well-lauded virtue, yet still slightly overshadowed by “more prominent” virtues like love, joy, or peace. But I couldn’t have been more wrong.

After a few weeks’ study, I’ve grown to realize that gentleness is actually one of the most powerful virtues out of the nine fruits of the Spirit. And, in light of recent events surrounding Ferguson, Missouri, gentleness is a virtue that we could certainly stand to use more of in our society. Oftentimes, gentleness is put on the back-burner. On the virtuous extreme, everyone wants to exhibit grand gestures of love, kindness, or faithfulness; on the worldly extreme, the world screams, “Be loud! Be assertive! Stand your ground! Fight!” Meanwhile, gentleness is in the background, quietly waiting to be put into action, whispering, “Listen. Be gentle. Be calm. Be patient.” It’s not easily understood, but truthfully, gentleness is an important component of what makes a society – and an individual – truly great. Not “great,” as in a great, or fantastic, person to be around. But great – as in someone who is an influential warrior who wins in life for Christ and His kingdom.

Now, the concept of gentleness presents a paradox. It seems unnatural that being gentle would result in the most powerful result. But that’s exactly why gentleness is powerful. The world expects loud, grand shows of strength or power. It expects reactions of scoffing and anger in appropriate – and inappropriate – situations. But what the world doesn’t expect is gentleness. It scares the world when one who is supposed to react in anger and frustration responds with gentle calmness to a situation. It scares the world when gentleness is the first response, rather than the last. Gentleness? It’s shocking – and in that vein, so powerful – for our human minds to comprehend, and we need strength that’s not our own to be able to respond that way. Gentleness becomes like a mesmerizing mirage – except it’s real – and it draws others in to observe who we are and what we stand for. Through gentleness, a great society is made, while hope is simultaneously created and sustained.

There’s no time like the present to see how applicable gentleness can be in our daily lives. With recent events concerning racial tensions in Missouri (and all over the U.S.), one is left to wonder how much more powerful the protests would be if approached with gentleness. Of course, political and societal change is tough to bring about – but it could all begin with gentleness. And that begins when we allow God to work in our hearts, and teach us the patient, gentle approach to life’s situations. It’s tempting to have a heavy heart with news of the riots, protests, looting, and general vandalism that has come about as a result of the past day’s news, but the one flame of true hope I’ve found amongst this muddled situation comes from above. What a wave of peacefulness washes over me, knowing that God is in control, is always loving, kind, and gentle with us, and will teach us how to live the same way as well.

4 thoughts on “Gentle Like a Lamb

  1. Fantastic!!! This piece should become viral. Just what we need to hear and read about at this time. We are charged up by your writing. There’s no question – we are gravely deficient in gentleness. Keep on keeping up. Love,Dad.

  2. So thankful to God for you Princess!! Dad is right on….we are gravely deficient in gentleness. Oh that our hearts as His Bride would break and allow God to work in us His purpose to bring transformative change! I see your generation mighty in His hands…..Love-Momma.

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