Today’s Reading: Matthew 5:5 (HCSB)
The gentle are blessed, for they will inherit the earth.
Today’s Question: What makes you more upset or angry than anything else? How do you handle situations when you want to explode (or implode)?
“O the bliss of the man who is always angry at the right time and never angry at the wrong time, who has every instinct, and impulse, and passion under control because he himself is God-controlled, who has the humility to realize his own ignorance and his own weakness, for such a man is a king among men!” –W. Barclay
Tommy was a giant of a man. When I knew him, he was a collegiate football player. Yet, his biceps were not his most impressive attribute. It was his heart for God. He was a peacemaker. In the first few years of my walk with Christ, Tommy was a great illustration of meekness and gentleness. He had the physical strength to crush an opponent. Yet, he had the spiritual maturity to restrain his temper, his tongue, and any thought of using his size to manipulate or intimidate others.
A gentle spirit comes from God, for it is a “fruit” of the Holy Spirit (see Galatians 5:22). Gentleness and self-control go hand-in-hand. Unfortunately, our society exalts those who are violent and exert their superiority. The one who is willing to “crush the little guy” and use others for his own benefit seems to climb the corporate ladder. This is not so among the disciples of Jesus, for a gentle spirit does not use power for his own selfish purposes. A gentle (or meek) man who controls his strength and his power (however much he has attained) is completely surrendered to God.
Jesus was the perfect example of meekness, with unlimited power under the control of God. As Peter reminds us:
For you were called to this, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you should follow in His steps. He did not commit sin, and no deceit was found in His mouth; when He was reviled, He did not revile in return; when He was suffering, He did not threaten but entrusted Himself to the One who judges justly. (1 Peter 2:21-23, HCSB)
“Follow One, Lead Others” Principle #4: True disciples of Jesus do not lead by force but with a gentle spirit that draws others to Christ.
Today’s Prayer Point: Ask God to help you control your emotions. When our emotions take control, instead of the Holy Spirit, our witness for Christ can be damaged.