Let’s get one thing straight right of the get go: gentleness is not weakness.
Rather, gentleness is great strength under control. Think of it like a lioness caring for her cubs. Like a ballet dancer in pointe shoes. Like a horse wearing a bridle. Like all the claims of toilet paper brands, “Gentle on skin, strong when wet!” 🙂
This is the kind of strength that the world needs more of, don’t you think? The kind of strength that involves humility, thankfulness, and soft heartedness towards others. This is restrained strength, meekness, gentleness.
The opposites of gentleness are things like anger, a desire for revenge, and self-aggrandizement. And the world is full of the evidence of those at work in grocery check outs, highway traffic, political bravado, and even family conflict.
Jesus gave us the amazing image of gentleness. When he was at his height of popularity, and public social power, he entered Jerusalem for the last week of his life. He chose to enter, not on a war horse, but rather, riding on a donkey. Matthew 21:5 says, “See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey”.
Although we may not have the sorts of crowds following us that Jesus did, every person is powerful and we all have influence. When we speak we influence others. We can act in ways that help or hurt; and we can choose what influences will inform our words and actions. Gentleness constrains and channels that power.
Do not be afraid of being viewed weak, and enter rooms with your power on display. Enter rooms with gentleness, using your strength to serve, just like Jesus.