Are You Gentle Like Jesus?

Dan Doriani | January 12, 2016

Not long ago, I was asked to help with a series of devotionals on the fruit of the Spirit for our seminary’s day of prayer. I chose gentleness since I want to be more gentle and hope to learn what that means. I had limited time to prepare, and so reminded myself to avoid the mistakes born of haste (or ignorance). I would not search for quotations or stories about gentleness, since the first assumes my culture has a valid concept of gentleness and the second assumes I do. Nor would I be content to simply list a string of verses that mention gentleness. Again it would be too easy to pour personal or Western definitions into the term.

Reading cultural or preferred definitions into a term is a common error. For example, my two-year-old granddaughter came into my home office as I worked on the devotional and said, “Papa read me a story?” I replied, “I can’t right now honey, I’m working.” She paused to think and asked, “Danny and the Dinosaur?” This, she sensed, was the book most likely to elicit “Okay, bring it to me.” Thirty seconds later, we were reading. It’s important to reward ingenuity.

I shared…

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