Daily Word of Grace # 71 (June 23, 2020)
One of the often overlooked attributes of Jesus is his gentleness. Perhaps this is because we live in a world in which gentleness is often absent, in which gentleness is deemed less important than being assertive. And yet gentleness mattered a lot to Jesus, as he preached, “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle” (Matthew 11:29). The Old Testament prophet Isaiah described the coming Messiah as being a gentle shepherd: “He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep” (Isaiah 40:11). Gentleness marks the life of one who is led by the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:23). During his earthly ministry Jesus treated with gentleness those who were not used to be treated gently—lepers, tax collectors, prostitutes, criminals. In his passion and death Jesus was even gentle with those who false accused him of blasphemy, as he kept his silence; Jesus was even gentle with the soldiers who struck him on the face as he turned the other cheek; Jesus was even gentle to those who nailed him to the cross and prayed on their behalf, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34). Moreover, the Risen Jesus treated his disciples with gentleness, proclaiming to them repeatedly, “Peace be with you” (John 20:19, 21, 26). And the Risen Jesus treats all of us with gentleness, and in response as we read in scripture, “Let your gentleness be known to everyone” (Philippians 4:5).
Love and Prayers,