This week's memory verse:
"Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls." Matthew 11:29
It can be said, there is not much gentleness in this world anymore. If you watch tv or the movies, it seems being gentle is not the "in" thing to be. In many aspects, gentleness is considered a synonym for weakness.
I don't agree. I agree with the old saying "You can catch more bees with honey than you can with vinegar." I think you can persuade, lead, teach, and correct people in a gentle manner instead of with arguments and confrontation. For that matter, I think you can confront a person or a problem in a gentle manner as well. This is the way I try to lead my own life...the way I do my job, the way I work in my marriage, the way I work in my relationships.
The only relationship that I really struggle with gentleness is with my daughter. I find myself losing patience with her and nagging and NOT being gentle with her way more than I should and definitely way more than I want to. I think it is because we are so much alike and I see her making the same mistakes I have made and I want to help her NOT to continue making them. It is something that I really am praying about and working on. And I think THAT is what our memory verse is talking about.
In that verse and in the several verses before it, Jesus is telling those around him to watch him and learn from the way he acts because he is gentle and humble in the way he handles things. If we do this, then we will find rest for our souls...meaning we will be at peace with our actions. Again, it seems we have the perfect role model for our actions in Jesus!
As we tell the kids at our KidsPraise program every Sunday...the Bible is like a flash light to light our path...it shows us the way we are to go. Jesus gives us his example to follow, and there are MANY other life lessons for us in both the new and old testaments. I don't mean we should not eat certain kinds of meat, wear certain kinds of clothes, have more than one wife (all things that people in the Bible did) but take lessons on the lessons that characters in the Bible learned.
For example: read Numbers 12:1-15
Moses, who was leading his people to the promised land was dealing with some grumbling among the ranks...from his own brother and sister no less! They were speaking against him because he married a cushite woman (outside their group). God actually scolded them for their disloyalty and the sister, Miriam was struck with leprosy. Instead of gloating and leaving Miriam to suffer (serving her right for her unkindness) Moses pleads with God to heal her. Moses did the humble and gentle thing, even if it wasn't fair. Moses was more concerned about Miriam and about preserving God's honor than he was about his own ego.
Dear God, you show us there is strength in gentleness. I want to continue to learn to be a gentle person who is strong in faith and in beliefs. You know where I struggle...show me how to learn from your word and be the person you want me to be. Help my friends to listen to you and strive to be gentle in the many difficult situations in their lives as well. Amen.