Gentle and Lowly
13 January 2018
GraceNotes – A Journey of Discovery
Scripture: Matthew 5:1-12 (Click link for scripture in Bible Gateway)
God blesses those who are gentle and lowly, for the whole earth will belong to them. (Matthew 5:5 NLT)
Jesus said some pretty shocking things that afternoon to the people gathered on a hillside in Galilee! Not least of which was that the wealth and treasures of the earth lay waiting not for the arrogant and powerful but for gentle and lowly folks!
I thought about all the people I know. I thought about all the people in the news—the politicians, the business leaders, the actors and entertainers. I thought that now, just as when Jesus first spoke these words 2000 years ago, our world doesn’t give much honor, respect, and value to the “humble and gentle.” It seems like most attention and acclaim goes to “arrogant and aggressive” or to “confident and driven!”
Friends, how are we going to learn a new way of thinking about what goodness and greatness really are? It’s not merely our modern society that’s messed up! It’s been this way for as long as history has been recorded. We Christians say that gentleness, humility, and kindness are important, but pretty much everything in our world pressures us and trains us and drives us to be proud and aggressive and to think of our success as way more important than our character and our Christ-likeness.
In Christ’s Kingdom, in the world of Christ-followers, it’s the great reversal! The first shall be last, and the last shall be first. Jesus strongly maintained his emphasis on gentleness, meekness, humility, and kindness throughout his life and ministry. Both Paul and Peter continue this emphasis in their letters to the churches. This, friends is our new Gold Standard:
Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. – Jesus (Matthew 11:29 NLT)
Father, It seems as if everything in our world and everything in me resists and works against gentleness, humility, meekness, and kindness. But I know that in my heart is a place where your Spirit, the Spirit of Gentleness and Humility lives. I’m determined to learn to live more and more like Jesus, driven less and less by my selfish desires and more by your Spirit. I embrace gentleness and humility. Please change me and keep changing me until I can truly say I am humble and gentle at heart. In Jesus’ Name!