Being a gentle person means that though you have the power and potential to be devastating through your attitudes and actions, you control them so that you have a calming and soothing effect on others. ~Anonymous
Gentleness can be found at the corner of Fruit of the Spirit Boulevard and Beatitudes Highway.
- From the beatitudes: Blessed are the gentle (or the meek, depending on your translation), for they shall inherit the earth. Matthew 5:5.
- And, from Galatians 5: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Some fruits of the Spirit represent a firmness or assertiveness, gentleness is more an attitude and mindset. It is a desperate need in today’s world. Gentleness sometimes means…
- Having enough ammunition to blow someone out of the water but keeping your mouth shut.
- Not blowing out someone else’s candle, so your candle will shine brighter.
- Listening and waiting — not for your turn — but for God’s turn to step in and speak wisdom and truth.
Perhaps more than the other fruits, gentleness is intertwined with its neighbors, particularly patience, peace and self-control, as well as other scripture references. Also see Philippians 4:5; Colossians 3:12; Colossians 4:5-6; 2 Timothy 2:24-26.
Gentleness will also lead you to be considerate, meek, quiet or even submissive, but it is not a sign of weakness. In this confusing world of mixing metaphors and conflating arguments, men can be gentle and firm at the same time. Women can be gentle and forceful. Anyone can be gentle and still display a strong tenacity without becoming overbearing.
How to practice gentleness:
- Listen first and listen often.
- Be patient and practice self-control.
- Wait for God’s turn.
- Speak with authority and wisdom and with the peace that passes understanding.
- Sit down and shut up.
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. ~Proverbs 15:1.