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September 19, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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"I, Paul, myself am pleading with you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ . . .”—2 Corinthians 10:1 (NKJV)
It’s funny how life changes your perspective on things. For example, when I was tearing it up on the playground of Roslyn Elementary, I had a certain idea about “toughness.” My buddies and I would endlessly debate who would win in a fight between this and that combatant. Inevitably, whoever had the biggest muscles and punched the hardest claimed the title.
But as you actually walk through life, you start to see things differently. Toughness and strength aren’t measured by how much pain and punishment you can dish out to others, but by how much you can receive without caving in. As an adult, the toughest people that come to my mind are those who’ve taken the punches in stride without losing their composure.
I believe this is an accurate portrayal of the character quality known as meekness. Somewhere along the way, we’ve equated meekness with weakness. It’s just the opposite! Meekness is strength under control. It’s the inner muscle that enables someone to receive punishment without retaliating. The meekest person in the room is actually the strongest . . . and there’s none more meek than Jesus.
In the passage above, Paul calls our attention to the meekness of Christ. Consider the power that coursed through His veins. He was the Creator of the cosmos with immeasurable might. Yet, when He was arrested, accused, and beaten, He didn’t retaliate. Instead He received it and even used the moment to get His abusers to reflect on what they were doing: “Jesus answered him, ‘If I have spoken evil, bear witness of the evil; but if well, why do you strike Me?’” (John 18:23 NKJV).
This was just the beginning of the abuse that would be heaped on Jesus over the next several hours. And through it all, He never punched back. He received it all with perfect composure and grace. When we consider all that Jesus took, it’s accurate to say that He was the toughest and meekest person to have ever lived!
As Christians, we’re called to possess the same quality of character. Meekness isn’t just something we admire in Jesus, but it’s something He’s also producing in us as our lives are increasingly conformed into His image (Romans 8:29). When you think of toughness, remember its relationship to meekness. Moreover, remember that this is part of the “new you” that God’s bringing into being.
DIG: What is meekness?
DISCOVER: How did Christ demonstrate meekness? How can you use His example to demonstrate it in your own life?
DISPLAY: What situation are you facing that’s an opportunity to grow in meekness? Take the opportunity today and be like Jesus! Put on meekness as you interact with others, as you’re tested, or as you encounter a difficult person.
Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.