Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Meekness.

From Woman's Day magazine. Week ending 21st February 1959.

Most people think "meek" means "mousy". They picture a timid little person saying "sorry" every other minute, and generally trying to keep out of the way. 

In fact, what Jesus meant by meekness requires more moral courage than most of us possess. He was Himself the supreme example of meekness. That is to say, He never stood on His rights. 

"Let Christ Himself be your example as to what your attitude should be," wrote St. Paul. "For He, Who had always been God by nature, did not cling to His prerogatives as God's Equal, but stripped Himself of all privilege by consenting to be a slave by nature and being born as a mortal man."

As far as He Himself was concerned He never exercised His rights. On the contrary, He allowed people to ride roughshod over Him, even to crucify Him in the end. 

He stood up fearlessly for the rights of others, but never for His own. 

That sort of behaviour seems to us to court disaster. It means letting other people "get away with murder." In His case it literally did. 

But in the end this meekness, this willingness to submit, bears fruit. It earths the charge of other people's ill-nature, it absorbs their malice, and so takes the sting out of many a situation, when a response of anger, even of "righteous indignation" would double the trouble. 

And "they shall inherit the earth." 

Having made no claims on anything, there is nothing the meek can be turned out of. So in a strange way they have a right to everything; a right which God recognises, even though the meek only experience it as the perfect freedom which their humble service brings. They are the earth's Freemen. 

I struggle with meekness and did, for a long time, view it as a kind of weakness. I find it so hard to let people "get away" with things. I don't want people to think that I am some spineless creature to be walked over. Perhaps I am to concerned with what other people think! Thinking too much of myself and how I think I deserve to be treated seems to be the opposite of meekness. It is putting myself and all my selfish wants at the centre of my life.

I am working on conquering this sin in myself. After all, compared to what Jesus went through, my daily struggles are not true suffering at all. Focusing on those small hurts means that they end up out of proportion and they are given more value than they should have. What right do I have to put my wants over God's plans for my life? None at all! It is pride and arrogance that makes me flare up when someone takes advantage. It is me thinking that I deserve more than I do. 

Meekness isn't weakness. It is a kind of strength! It is trusting in God and His plans and turning to Him and His wisdom in times of need. It is not trying to control life and people to try to get the result you want. 

Trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
and He will give you the desires of your heart. 

Commit your way to the Lord; 
trust in Him and He will do this:
He will make your righteous rewards shine like the dawn,
your vindication like the noonday sun. 

Psalm 37 3 - 6

Blessings, 

Jenny

3 comments:

  1. Excellent reminder. and an excellent clarification of what it means to be meek :-)

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  2. Wonderful words to live by. Thanks for sharing.

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  3. I enjoyed this very much. I have heard meekness defined as "strength under control" ~ what a blessed trait to cultivate. Thank you for this encouragement. Stopping by from Raising Homemakers. :o)

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