Its another new month! And with a new month comes a new spiritual fruit for us to dig deeper into. I do have a confession though – we should be doing goodness this month (if we were sticking in order!!), but my muddled mum brain thought it said gentleness. Hopefully this is a God thing, and that this is the right month for us all to learn more about gentleness! If you missed our month on kindness then read Naomi’s final post from last week here.
Our verse for this week has had a big impact on me:
“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger” Proverbs 15:1
Here’s a question for you. When you think of the word “gentle” what comes to mind? For me, it was always squishy things, fluffly animals, stroking things softly, the skin of a baby’s bottom. Everything that my mind came up with around gentle was to do with touch and hands. When my second child came along, I remember constantly screaming the phrase “GENTLE HANDS!!!!” at my then two year old son, to try and get him to be nice to his new baby brother (not that it did much good!). But here’s the thing – this verse, and most of the others we will meditate on this month, don’t talk about gentleness in reference to touch. It talks about gentleness in reference to our words.
So after this big realisation at the beginning of this week, I set about pondering how on earth we can be gentle with our words. I was reminded that as this is a fruit of the spirit, it is something that we will grow in as we get closer to God. The tone of the verse reminded me of one that we looked at during our meditations on peace:
“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone” Romans 12:18.
God’s desire is for us to live at peace with one another, and being gentle with our words is something that will facilitate us in that. It says clearly in our verse that a gentle answer turns away wrath. This means that if we consider how we use our words, and choose them carefully so as to be gentle to others, then this will mean the reaction to them will be more favourable. On the flip side, if we are harsh and are not careful with out words we will make others angry.
choosing our gentle words
Yup, once again we have a part to play in developing this fruit, as well as just drawing closer to God and his Spirit. We have a choice. Interestingly this verse refers to giving an “answer“. So this means someone has asked us a question in the first place. I want to offer perhaps a few hints on how we can choose gentle words and grow in this this month.
- If someone asks you something, take some time to consider before you answer. Pray in that gap for wisdom to choose the gentle words to answer.
- Think over how you would react to what you are thinking of saying. If you think it would be offensive or would make you angry if you were in the other persons shoes then reconsider what you want to say to be a bit gentler.
- Think of your words in a physical sense. Are they sharp or soft in the language you are using? If they sound sharp or harsh, them pray for others to use and a different approach. Someone once said to me “If words were like knives, how many people would you have assassinated today?”
- Recognise that words have power. Take into consideration how powerful words can be, and that we cannot take them back once said. With this in mind, is it better to say it or not?
We are going to carry on looking at gentleness with this verse:
“Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2 to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone.” Titus 3:1-2
Naomi will be writing up the summary on her blog next Sunday so make sure to read it then! If you would like to join our Mummy Meditations Facebook Community, where you can join in during the week and have access to free resources to help, then fill in the form below:
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