Gentleness is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit, and without the Holy Spirit, these characteristics are contrary to human nature. Atheistic and pagan cultures do not exhibit gentleness. Philosophies such as fascism and communism that embrace Darwinism are devoid of gentleness. Gentleness = love + joy + peace + meekness. It is not talked about a lot even in Christian sermons and teachings. In II Samuel 22:36 and Psalm 18:35, David credits gentleness in making him great. In these discourses, he attributes all of the advantages that the Lord had given him in becoming king. Gentleness means that you are totally transparent and vulnerable. You are meek, with nothing to lose. It is a position of strength, abundance and unlimited supply where you can afford to administer mercy, grace and compassion for other people. In II Corinthians 10:1, gentleness brings boldness. A gentle person speaks evil of no man, no brawlers, and showing meekness and humilty toward all men. A gentle person shows wisdom, being peacable, gentle, easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality or hypocrisy. The fruits of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance. Against such there is no law.
Peace is a tremendous advantage in being a Christian. It is knowing that the Bible is internally consistent. Peace is an eternal perspective, knowing that God is in control, that we are a child of the King and our ultimate destination is heaven. Think of moments that encourage peace, like your times on a still lake with the mist rising up, a walk in the woods and listening to the birds singing their songs. Pursue them more frequently. Evolution cannot explain peace. It is opposite of the survival of the fittest. Altruism, giving, speaking encouraging words and blessing other people all bring peace and depend upong God as our supply, enough where we can share with others. Peace is allowing the Lord to fight for you, holding your peace in the midst of strife. Jesus became our peace offering. If someone smashes your car and you decide to forgive them, who pays for the repair? You do. That’s what Jesus did. He took the penalty for the damage you have done with sin. Who brings peace? The Holy Spirit. Enemies of peace: confusion, anger, bitterness, accusation, envy, jealousy, unforgiveness, replay, selfishness, fear, guilt, shame, lying and hatred. If you want peace, purge yourself of these. If you find that difficult, ask God for help.
God’s Creation is Pure Joy!
You could call it unscientific, but encounters with God often occur when we enter into a place of pure beauty and solitude with nothing but silent still waters and the wildlife surrounding us. Such times yield moments of pure joy, and as we allow God to speak to us through His creation, we become renewed. We reflect on our past experiences where we seize the moments when we encounter beautiful views, serene moments and inspirational observations. For Doug it was a garden of Eden experience in Kauai and northern Michigan, for Rich, his Grand Canyon experience and Glacier National Park.