Saturday, February 26, 2011

Character: A Spirit of Meekness

Here is a wonderful definition of  meekness:  strength under control!  Jesus exemplified this characteristic and as we become transformed into His likeness, it will be evidenced in our lives as well.  Let's consider what meekness looks like in Scripture.  The book of Isaiah introduced us to Christ long before He walked on the earth, and Isaiah 53:7 says this:  "He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth..."  At any point in Christ's earthly journey, He could have accessed and utilized His divine powers and ended His sufferings; His decision not to do that is meekness! 

Meekness is not a human response; it is a divine fruit of the spirit which offers special blessings.  Our beloved Savior's call to take his yoke of meek humility upon ourselves comes with a promise--rest for our souls.  Paul tells us that our ability to instruct others requires this characteristic, and James admonishes readers to meekly receive God's Word which delivers us.  Clearly a spirit of meekness will affect our very salvation and the salvation of others!  Perhaps the most glorious blessing of meekness, though, is God's view of it--a meek and quiet spirit is precious to our great God!  Allowing this spirit to flow in and through our days is of value to God Himself.

The key to pleasing our Father, to embracing Christ's yoke and heeding James' admonishment is revealed by Peter's explanation of Jesus' actions:  '...He entrusted himself to him who judges justly.'  Faith in God's power and love is the only way to respond with meekness to the injustices of life.  Our reaction to unfair accusations and cruel, evil intentions is self-righteous anger and retaliation.  Throughout Scripture we are called to love in the face of evil just as Christ loved us in our sinfulness.  God has given tremendous examples of His children who lived with meekness.  We can learn from the lives of Moses, David, Jeremiah, Stephen and Paul; but we trust in the risen power of Christ--our perfect example--to fill us with His Spirit. 

Family Chat:

How do you usually respond to unkindness or lies about you?

What kind of results do you get?  Is your heart at peace? 

How does your usual response affect your view/relationship with God?  How about the other person's view of God?

What are some of the blessings God promises to those who live with meekness?
Psalm 22:26; 37:11; 147:6; 149:4; Isaiah 11:4; 29:19

How did these Bible characters demonstrate meekness?
Moses (Numbers 12:3); David (2 Samuel 16:11); Jeremiah (Jer 26:14); Stephen (Acts 7:60); Paul 2 Tim 4:16

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