Season 7 Sweet Selah Moments Podcast, Sweet Selah Moments Podcast

Episode 105 – The Surprising Strength of Gentleness

Season 7 Sweet Selah Moments Podcast
Season 7 Sweet Selah Moments Podcast
Episode 105 - The Surprising Strength of Gentleness

Gentleness is not weakness. In fact, it’s a lot easier to be loud and angry than it is to be quiet and gentle when provoked. It requires an immense amount of strength and self-control. Join Nicole and Sharon as they talk about their favorite gentle people, and discuss how to yield to the Spirit in this area, growing the fruit of gentleness each and every day.

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Read the transcript for The Surprising Strength of Gentleness-Episode 105

Speaker 1 (00:01):

Welcome to a podcast designed to bring biblical encouragement to your weary soul. We are so glad you’re listening and we pray God blesses you and strengthens you in your walk with him. The Sweet Selah Moments Podcast is brought to you by the cooperative efforts of Sweet Selah Ministries and Word Radio. Sit back and enjoy.

Nicole (00:01):

Welcome to the Sweet Selah Moments Podcast. This is episode 105, The Surprising Strength of Gentleness. We’ve been walking through the fruits of the Spirit, one fruit at a time, wanting so much to grow in this area of living a fruitful life. We’ve talked about joy, love, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and faithfulness. Only two fruit left, Sharon. Today, today we talk about gentleness. When I think about gentleness, it reminds me of a dear family friend of mine, Robin Vine. She was a close friend of my mom and I had started to babysit her kiddos when she only had two kiddos, and now she has eight.

Sharon (01:08):

Oh my, family grew a bit.

Nicole (01:10):

It grew quite a bit. I started babysitting when I was 10 for her two little ones.

Sharon (01:14):


Nicole (01:14):

And yeah, her oldest ones now are married with children. So that’s a little weird. It makes me feel a little old. But she was such a gentle woman. With all of those children she was this gentle, soothing mama. When she would correct them, it was always so gently with this gentle spirit. I just thought she was amazing. And she’d say, oh, after two, it’s all the same. And I’m like, I’ve had four. I don’t feel that yet.

Sharon (01:39):

Maybe you need eight.

Nicole (01:39):

Maybe I need eight. That’s the secret. And you know, it’s so sweet. As I’ve seen her children grow up, they’re all young adults now. And some of them are still my oldest daughter’s age. They’re all so gentle. They have that same gentle spirit of their mom and their dad. (Sharon: Oh Nicole, what a tribute) This family, they just have this beautiful love for Jesus. And it shows in her gentleness. I’m like, oh, when I grow up I wanna be like her in her gentleness.

Sharon (02:04):

Yes. So good. You know, I’ve said this before, one of the things I wish I could change the most is the anger I had with my children.

Nicole (02:11):


Sharon (02:12):

A gentle answer turneth away wrath. (Nicole: Mm-hmm I know) Gentleness is so important. And it’s so hard.

Nicole (02:18):

It’s so hard.

Sharon (02:19):


Nicole (02:19):

And we spent a lot of time with them, so we saw them behind the scenes too. So she truly was gentle all the time.

Sharon (02:24):

I love that.

Nicole (02:25):

It wasn’t a show.

Sharon (02:25):

I love that. Oh my goodness.

Nicole (02:26):

It’s a beautiful thing.

Sharon (02:27):

Well, Dad Gamble’s one of my favorite gentle people.

Nicole (02:29):

Oh, I love him.

Sharon (02:30):

He’s just always been gentle I remember a time when either Mary or Kathryn, one of them had this little cheap necklace that got tangled beyond measure.

Nicole (02:40):

Oh yes.

Sharon (02:41):

And I’m trying to untangle it and worried I’m gonna break it more. I have no patience for the thing. And it was cheap, you know, like five bucks. But they were crying. And so gentle Dad Gamble said, give it to me. And then he put on his special, he had like a magnifying glass in one eye. (Nicole: Yeah) And then he had little tweezers and he, it took him over an hour of just sweet tugging and pulling gently to fix a cheap little necklace.

Nicole (03:11):

Oh my goodness.

Sharon (03:12):

Because that’s what they wanted.

Nicole (03:14):

And that’s what a gentle person would do.

Sharon (03:15):

And that’s what he did. Yeah. Yeah.

Nicole (03:17):

I’d be like, five bucks, throw it away.

Sharon (03:18):

I wouldn’t have the patience. Throw it away. Let’s start over. So.

Nicole (03:20):

Aw. That’s so sweet.

Sharon (03:22):

So sweet. And then we had a dog I loved that. I had to learn to be gentle with, Tank. Of course Ray named him.

Nicole (03:30):

Did Ray name him?

Sharon (03:31):

Yeah. I didn’t get to name a dog till Bella. But Tank had been abandoned. We think he, it was, you know, it was on a military base of course cause we lived on military bases. (Nicole: Right) The next door neighbors’ girl found him. And he had mange, he had fleas. He was a mess. He was absolutely a mess. And we think maybe he was thrown out of a car because he threw up every time he got in a car.

Nicole (03:53):

Oh my goodness.

Sharon (03:54):

He had definite PTSD about cars. But if you even raised your voice at Tank, he shook and went to the bathroom all over the floor. He just did. So if we weren’t gentle with him we were gonna pay for it.

Nicole (04:06):


Sharon (04:07):

You know, and let alone poor Tanky. So. But being gentle with Tank it’s all he needed. Nicole, he’s my favorite dog. He adored me.

Nicole (04:16):

Even though he was a little bit more work.

Sharon (04:19):

He was a little more high maintenance. But it’s funny that gentleness bonded us so closely.

Nicole (04:22):


Sharon (04:23):

And wherever I was, Tank was right there.

Nicole (04:25):

Oh, that’s so interesting.

Sharon (04:26):

And he saw me through the war, Persian Gulf War.

Nicole (04:27):


Sharon (04:28):

Yeah. Yeah. So I learned a lot of gentleness from Tank.

Nicole (04:32):

Oh, sweet puppy.

Sharon (04:33):

It was so good. Yeah. Well, I chose ‘The Surprising Strength of Gentleness’ as our title because I think sometimes we think of gentle as weak and it isn’t. So it’s based on three of my favorite scripture verses actually, this whole concept. And it’s Matthew 11:28-30. I memorized it of course in the King James version when I was little. And even then I often felt burdened and heavy laden, even then as a kid.

Nicole (04:58):

I know, right.

Sharon (04:59):

Which is kind of silly when I think about it, but I’ve always been an overachiever. Right? (Nicole: Yeah) And overachievers get stressed. (Yes) Even if they’re eight years old and wanna get straight A’s in school. So, there’s some good things about working hard. There’s also some bad, right? You get overstressed. And I’ll tell you one thing, it surely makes one tired if one is doing all the work in one’s own limited strength.

Nicole (05:20):


Sharon (05:20):


Nicole (05:21):

It’s the quickest way to burnout.

Sharon (05:22):

Good gravy. So later I memorized it in the New International Version, and it’s the version where we find the word gentle used. So I’m gonna read it in the New International Version. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” So let’s just linger there for a moment. What stands out to you about those verses?

Nicole (05:56):

Doesn’t that last verse always feel like a breath of fresh air?

Sharon (06:00):


Nicole (06:00):

Just like, I always kind of sigh and like unwind a little whenever I read that. My yoke is easy and my burden is light. Like why am I carrying mine? Drop it for a minute and just bask in his lightness, you know?

Sharon (06:13):

Exactly. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.

Nicole (06:14):

The other part ‘for I am gentle and humble in heart’. He’s not overachieving and pushing and driving and pushing us forward.

Sharon (06:23):

He’s not the sergeant with the private, ‘Move it’.

Nicole (06:25):

No. Right. ‘Get it done. Win people for my kingdom’, he’s gentle and humble. Like, oh, I wanna work for somebody. I wanna serve somebody who’s gentle and humble.

Sharon (06:33):

Yes. Yes.

Nicole (06:34):

That is such an inviting person to be with.

Sharon (06:37):

You know what, that’s the word, inviting. You want to be near the one who is gentle and humble.

Nicole (06:44):

I want to be yoked to him. Cause to be yoked with somebody, you’re going in the same direction, following the lead of whoever you’re attached to.

Sharon (06:51):


Nicole (06:51):

With a big wooden beam around your neck.

Sharon (06:54):

So you want it to be the one that’s gonna take you in easy directions and take you gently and take the bulk of the load.

Nicole (07:01):


Sharon (07:01):

Which is what he does.

Nicole (07:02):

He does. We don’t have to equally share it.

Sharon (07:04):

Oh, man. I can remember walking down the road, I can’t remember which dog I had at the time. I think, I think it was Porsche, Ray named one of our dogs after the fast race car, because we had lots of interesting names. But anyways, whatever dog it was that I was walking with, I was feeling burdened and heavy laden.

Nicole (07:22):


Sharon (07:22):

You know, like this verse says, come to me if you feel burdened and heavy laden. That was me. A lot of friends were in crisis. And I was just carrying this load of, oh, help this one, who’s got this crisis. Help this one who’s got this crisis, da da da da. And then this verse came to me and I thought, wait a second. His yoke and his burden is light and I don’t feel that. It’s heavy. Why Lord? And he’s like, because you haven’t given it to me.

Nicole (07:51):

Oh yeah.

Sharon (07:52):

You’re carrying it. You’re not yoked. You know?

Nicole (07:55):


Sharon (07:55):

So I did. I just basically mentally took this huge chunk of hurting people that I was so worried about and went ‘kerthunk’, right onto God. And I immediately felt lighter. He’s like, trust me with it.

Nicole (08:12):


Sharon (08:12):

The reason you’re in trouble is you’re not trusting me with it. You’re trying to solve all these problems yourself and you are not bringing them to me. So.

Nicole (08:20):


Sharon (08:20):

So that verse helped me then too. It was really, really neat.

Nicole (08:22):

That’s a great verse.

Sharon (08:23):

It is.

Nicole (08:24):

I need to read it more often.

Sharon (08:24):

It really is. Yeah. Yeah. So he’s gentle, he’s humble. So here’s the deal, it kind of seems strange to me when I was younger that Jesus would be called meek in the King James. Or gentle.

Nicole (08:36):


Sharon (08:37):

Because I associated it with weak.

Nicole (08:40):


Sharon (08:40):

And how can the King of kings and Lord of lords be weak?

Nicole (08:44):


Sharon (08:45):

It confused me, but it’s so far from what the word really means. So I’m gonna go to Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary and read what they define ‘gentleness’ or ‘meekness’ as being, it’s “sensitivity of disposition and kindness of behavior founded on strength and prompted by love”. You know, and we were talking about, you know, that wonderful woman that had eight kids and was gentle?

Nicole (09:11):


Sharon (09:12):

That took strength.

Nicole (09:13):

Oh it did.

Sharon (09:14):

That to be gentle when you wanted to yell, took strength. It took self-control. I am impressed with her. Gentleness is not weakness. (Nicole: No) At all. The patient, here’s continuing with the definition, “the patient and hopeful endurance of undesirable circumstances, identifies the person as externally vulnerable and weak, but inwardly resilient and strong”.

Nicole (09:37):

Ooh, that’s interesting.

Sharon (09:38):

Isn’t it?

Nicole (09:39):


Sharon (09:40):

Meekness does not identify the weak, but more precisely the strong, who have been placed in a position of weakness where they persevere without giving up. Yes.

Nicole (09:49):

Ooh, these are very good.

Sharon (09:51):

So all of a sudden you wanna be meek.

Nicole (09:53):

Yes. Well, and here’s the definition of meekness, Sharon, that confirms that the word Jesus used is far from being weak or a pushover. It’s more of a controlled strength, like you said. Here’s what the Encyclopedia of the Bible says. The meaning of weakness, meekness, ugh, bad slip. “Meekness is one of the most commonly misunderstood terms applied to godliness. It has been interpreted in a variety of ways, from weakness and timidity to strength and self-control. The Hebrew word meekness is from ‘anah’ to bend over, to bow down, to labor or toil, to bend down, to be low, depressed or humble.”

Sharon (10:33):

Hmm. Yeah. So it’s a choosing.

Nicole (10:34):


Sharon (10:35):

It’s a choosing to do it.

Nicole (10:36):

Not being forced down out of weakness.

Sharon (10:38):

No, you bend down.

Nicole (10:39):

LIke, I am putting myself down.

Sharon (10:40):

It’s not shoved down.

Nicole (10:41):

Yeah. That is very interesting.

Sharon (10:42):

Yeah, it is. So to be gentle is to control our strength. It’s strength under control. To receive hard things with patient endurance. To not push our weight around demanding our own way. And it takes a whole lot more strength and self-control for me to reply with gentleness to an angry person than it does to yell right back.

Nicole (11:01):

Yes it does.

Sharon (11:02):

Oh baby. Yeah. Gentleness is a beautiful word. So we’re gonna look at some instances of gentleness in the Bible, because we always like going to the Bible.

Nicole (11:10):


Sharon (11:11):

So I’m gonna read Isaiah 40:11. This is such a nice one for you Nicole, cause you are in this verse.

Nicole (11:18):

Oh, exciting.

Sharon (11:19):

Wait til you hear it. It’s beautiful. “He (God) will feed his flock like a shepherd. He will carry the lambs in his arms, holding them close to his heart. He will gently lead the mother sheep with their young.

Nicole (11:34):

Oh, that is sweet.

Sharon (11:35):

That’s yours.

Nicole (11:37):

I know. That is, I need to be gently led with my little lambs.

Sharon (11:42):

Yes. Yeah.

Nicole (11:42):

All going in the wrong/different directions.

Sharon (11:44):

And gentleness begets gentleness.

Nicole (11:46):

Oh yes.

Sharon (11:47):

Right? So when you let him gently lead, you’ve, you’ve been gentled.

Nicole (11:51):

Right. So I’ve been shown that way. And then I can lead and parent out of that way of gentleness.

Sharon (11:55):

I love that.

Nicole (11:56):

That’s a really nice one. I like that.

Sharon (11:57):

That is like such a mother verse and it’s so encouraging to know that he carries the little lambs close to his heart. He’s carrying your babies close to his heart.

Nicole (12:04):

Oh he is. That goes back, that laying down the burden too. I don’t have to carry them on my shoulder. I can give them to Jesus.

Sharon (12:11):


Nicole (12:11):

He’s already carrying them.

Sharon (12:13):

He already is. He already loves them. So much. So, yeah. Yeah. I think that’s beautiful.

Nicole (12:20):

That is a good one. I’ll read another passage from Isaiah, this was 43:1-3. “Look at my servant, whom I strengthen. He is my chosen one who pleases me. I’ve put my spirit upon him. He will bring justice to the nations. He will not shout or raise his voice in public. He will not crush the weakest reed or put out a flickering candle. He will bring justice to all who have been wronged.” Ooh. That’s a good one.

Sharon (12:46):

Isn’t that beautiful?

Nicole (12:48):

We feel so, I feel so helpless sometimes. And you see the weakest reeds getting crushed or injustice in the world. (Sharon: Uhhuh) And you just wanna like, shake your fist and go, why? Why are the innocent being harmed? (Mm-hmm) But he doesn’t raise his voice and he’ll bring justice to those who have been wronged.

Sharon (13:02):

He will. He sees it.

Nicole (13:04):

And that’s such a beautiful thing.

Sharon (13:05):

He sees it.

Nicole (13:05):

He does see it.

Sharon (13:06):

Yeah. And you think of a broken reed. Who doesn’t just, you know, step on a piece of broken grass? Right?

Nicole (13:12):

It’s already broken, it’s already weak.

Sharon (13:13):

Right. It’s already weak. God doesn’t. And I think that is so neat when it applies to people that are broken. You know, we can never say they’re too broken to be mended. (Nicole: Right) God, no matter how broken you are, still protects the weakest reed. (Yes) And the little candle that has the tiniest flicker left. (Yeah) He doesn’t put it out.

Nicole (13:37):

Put a big one next to it instead. Yeah.

Sharon (13:39):

No. He fans the flame. I love how God loves the weak. (Nicole: Mmm) I do. Because I often am.

Nicole (13:47):


Sharon (13:48):

You know, and you can kind of feel like you’re useless at certain points in your life. Well, he’s never gonna crush the broken reed. He’s never gonna stamp out the flickering flame. I love it.

Nicole (13:59):

That’s a beautiful passage.

Sharon (14:00):

Such, such a good one. I really love it. Well, now we’re gonna read a longer passage, 1 Timothy 6:3-11. So, why don’t I start with verse three and we’ll read back and forth. “Some people may contradict our teaching, says Paul to Timothy. But these are the wholesome teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. These teachings promote a godly life.”

Nicole (14:26):

“Anyone who teaches something different is arrogant and lacks understanding. Such a person has an unhealthy desire to quibble over the meaning of words. This stirs up arguments ending in jealousy, division, slander and evil suspicions. “

Sharon (14:39):

“These people always cause trouble. Their minds are corrupt and they have turned their backs on the truth. To them, a show of godliness is just a way to become wealthy.”

Nicole (14:50):

“Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth.”

Sharon (14:54):

“After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world. And we can’t take anything with us when we leave it.”

Nicole (15:00):

“So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content.”

Sharon (15:04):

“But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction.”

Nicole (15:14):

“For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people craving money have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.”

Sharon (15:24):

“But you, Timothy are a man of God. So run from all these evil things, pursue righteousness and a godly life along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness.”

Nicole (15:37):

Hmm. Pursue these things.

Sharon (15:40):

Pursue gentleness. Isn’t that fun?

Nicole (15:42):

And the ending for pursuing is much better than the ending for pursuing the love of money or wealth. And you can see, I don’t wanna be pierced with many sorrows.

Sharon (15:50):

No. You know, being wealthy doesn’t make you happy.

Nicole (15:54):


Sharon (15:54):

I mean, you can be happy wealthy, you can be happy un-wealthy.

Nicole (15:57):

Yeah, exactly.

Sharon (15:58):

But being wealthy isn’t the source of happiness. In fact,

Nicole (16:00):

It’s not a guarantee of happiness.

Sharon (16:01):

No. Good heavens. Sometimes it just makes you fussy.

Nicole (16:04):

Right. You have more to lose.

Sharon (16:04):

I know some wonderful wealthy people who are not fussy at all. But I also know some wealthy people who they’re so used to the best coffee.

Nicole (16:14):


Sharon (16:15):

That nothing else will do. They’re so used to getting their way in the kind of bedroom they wanna sleep in and the kind of, everythings, that if they don’t get it, they’re miserable. They haven’t learned contentment in whatever situation they are in. Like (Nicole: Right) Paul learned. And so it can be, it can be a problem. Wealth can be a problem. It really can.

Nicole (16:34):

Oh yeah. I think so cause you’re still have, you can still overspend I think. I was talking to someone who is rather wealthy and listening to this person. They still were paying their credit card debt. They were still, they just had more money to do things with.

Sharon (16:45):

Spend on more things.

Nicole (16:45):

But they were still having the same struggles we were. Just on a slightly different scale.

Sharon (16:49):

Yeah. You can still be in trouble with your mortgage of your mansion.

Nicole (16:52):

Yes. Yes. It’s all the same trouble, just a little bit of different scale

Sharon (16:57):

And there’s a ton to manage with money. So, so the goal of life is not to be wealthy.

Nicole (17:02):


Sharon (17:02):

If it happens to you, yay. You can be generous and give, give, give.

Nicole (17:06):


Sharon (17:06):

But the goal of life is not to just accrue stuff. (Nicole: Mm-hmm) If we have enough food, what does he say? I gotta find that place.

Nicole (17:12):

Food and clothing.

Sharon (17:14):

Food and clothing.

Nicole (17:15):

Just food and clothing.

Sharon (17:15):

Then you should be contented with that.

Nicole (17:15):

He didn’t say shelter.

Sharon (17:17):

Not even shelter.

Nicole (17:17):

He didn’t say car.

Sharon (17:19):

Yep. Nope. Food, clothing.

Nicole (17:20):

Didn’t say nice. Yeah. No. Just food and clothing. Like, huh. I, Hmm. I have a lot more than that. And I don’t feel so content all the time.

Sharon (17:27):

We have so much. We have so much.

Nicole (17:29):

Oh, it’s crazy.

Sharon (17:29):

I remember, um, back when I was struggling with my kitchen cause it was so tiny.

Nicole (17:33):


Sharon (17:34):

You know, this is a familiar story, but I’m just gonna tell it again because it really helped me with contentment. Yeah. I was very envious of people that had space in their kitchen so actually more than one person could be there in the same time, you know, where they actually had kitchen tables in their kitchen where you could sit. None of which I have in my kitchen. And all of a sudden, Nicole, God gave me a face of a woman and I knew she was from Haiti because my pastor had just come from a mission’s trip there. And he was talking about where he was in Haiti, that there were people that were, like 20 people were sharing one hut for sleeping. (Nicole: Wow) And the hut was so small that if you laid 10 people down, you could barely fit them in. (Oh my) So you had to sleep in shifts (Wow) with the shelter. (Yes) Otherwise you were outside all the time. So she was from one of those huts and she’s just looking at me. What? And I was so ashamed of myself. (Mm-hmm) I had a whole house. (Yeah) I had a whole house and I was whining about a kitchen. She was cooking outside.

Nicole (18:37):

Right. And sleeping in shifts.

Sharon (18:39):

For cry— and sleeping in shifts. Man, we have got, if we’re gonna compare, which we’re not supposed to be doing.

Nicole (18:46):


Sharon (18:46):

Can we just remember how much we have?

Nicole (18:48):


Sharon (18:49):

And be grateful. You know, instead of always looking at more. So I just thought that was really cool. And so we’re to run from all these things and instead we’re pursuing gentleness.

Nicole (18:58):


Sharon (18:58):

We’re pursuing the quiet way of life. Not the aggressive way of life.

Nicole (19:03):

I was gonna say pursuing wealth and fame and riches is so aggressive and cutthroat and you have to hurt so many, it feels like you have to hurt so many people to get there.

Sharon (19:10):

Yeah. Right. Right. Right. Right.

Nicole (19:10):

You know, cheat. And it’s just—

Sharon (19:12):

Yep. We don’t wanna do that.

Nicole (19:12):

Unless God has blessed you with that. Not everyone that’s wealthy is doing that.

Sharon (19:15):

No, no. Not everybody. No. But, but to pursue it can do that. If it’s given—

Nicole (19:20):

Yes. Above God, pursuing it above God.

Sharon (19:22):

You know, some of my friends that, that have money are like, wow, how’d that happen?

Nicole (19:25):


Sharon (19:26):

You know.

Nicole (19:26):


Sharon (19:26):

That’s the way for it to happen.

Nicole (19:27):

And that’s a beautiful gift from God that they are, that he’s given to them because obviously they’re doing something good with it. So.

Sharon (19:32):

Yeah. Exactly. Well, we’ve got more from Timothy and Paul.

Nicole (19:36):

I know.

Sharon (19:36):

Because Paul was such an advisor. Why don’t you read the next one.

Nicole (19:38):

So second Timothy 2:23 and 25. “Again, I say don’t get involved in foolish, ignorant arguments that only start fights. A servant of the Lord must not quarrel, but must be kind to everyone. Be able to teach and be patient with difficult people.” (Ooh) “Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts and they will learn the truth.”

Sharon (20:02):

Isn’t that interesting? When you disagree with someone gently instruct and perhaps God will change their minds.

Nicole (20:08):

Not us. So we don’t have to prove our point. We don’t have to argue in debates. (Sharon: No, Uhhuh, Uhuh) We have to be kind.

Sharon (20:14):

Right. And be gentle. The flavor that we leave, the aroma of Christ that we leave should not be of an aggressive in your face, sticking your fingers in their cheek, you know, kind of thing,

Nicole (20:27):

This is how it is. This is what it’s supposed to be

Sharon (20:30):

Yeah. Very few people are won by yelling.

Speaker 1 (20:32):

Yeah. I have never been persuaded by someone yelling at me.

Sharon (20:34):

I’ve never been persuaded by yelling because the person that’s yelling and shouting at me becomes the enemy.

Nicole (20:39):


Sharon (20:40):

And even if they’re right, you instinctively don’t want the enemy to win.

Nicole (20:45):

No. It’s so funny, when I was training at Options for Women, I had read this book about this lady, her life story, she was the head of a Planned Parenthood type organization who was responsible for thousands and thousands of abortions. (Sharon: Wow) And so many pro-life people had been so aggressive and hateful toward her and thrown dismembered baby dolls and called her horrible names and threatened her family and her. One person invited her to coffee one day, bought her coffee and just talked to her and listened to her, loved on her. And that person was the one that showed her God. And she left the industry, became a Christian, repented of her ways because that person was kind. It wasn’t the person holding the sign saying, ‘abortion is murder’. You’re a murderer. (Yeah. Yeah) It was a person that stopped and said, how are you? What do you, how can I pray for you?

Sharon (21:33):

Isn’t that awesome?

Nicole (21:34):

Just gives me chills to think about.

Sharon (21:35):

I love that.

Nicole (21:36):

But gentleness wins, you know?

Sharon (21:37):

Gentleness wins. Well, when you think if we are gonna imitate Christ, the fruit of the Spirit does not include anger, does not include fighting. Does not include aggression.

Nicole (21:47):


Sharon (21:47):

It’s love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. That’s it. It’s the softer ones. And yet they’re not weak.

Nicole (21:58):

No they’re not.

Sharon (21:58):

In fact they’re hard.

Nicole (22:00):

Yes. Cause you have to squish down those stronger feelings too and do these gentle ones.

Sharon (22:04):

Oh man. So, okay, now it’s time to apply it. We always, I love getting practical. You know, to just talk theory. You know, you can walk away too vague.

Nicole (22:14):

Right. That sounds great, but,

Sharon (22:16):

How do we do it in practice?

Nicole (22:17):


Sharon (22:17):

So first of all, God, now how do you practice gentleness with God? That’s interesting.

Nicole (22:22):

This one was tough.

Sharon (22:23):

That was hard.

Nicole (22:23):

I could not think of something. I thought about, well maybe not, I even asked my girls about it. Like, well, maybe not getting angry with God or yelling at him. I said, well, I think he wants us to be honest with him though. And David really let God have it sometimes.

Sharon (22:36):

Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

Nicole (22:36):

I don’t know if that’s gentleness. I don’t know how to show gentleness to God.

Sharon (22:41):

I am not sure either other than to gentle myself to accept his yoke.

Nicole (22:47):

Oh. Maybe not be the stubborn oxen trying to go the other direction.

Sharon (22:51):

Yeah. Yeah. That’s the best I could come up with, is it’s strength under control with gentleness. So when I start the day surrendered and I say, I wanna take your yoke. I mean, I got plans and it’s hard for me. I like my plans.

Nicole (23:07):

Got my list, I’m ready to go.

Sharon (23:08):

Yeah. Yep. Yep. But I’m going to choose to yoke myself to you. (Nicole: Mm-hmm) And if you pull me in another direction, I wanna go with you. I’m gonna be gentle. I’m not going to tug against you and kick.

Nicole (23:20):

Yeah. So maybe more the definition of the humble or the meekness aspect of gentleness in a relationship with God.

Sharon (23:26):

Yeah. That’s the best I could come up with.

Nicole (23:27):


Sharon (23:27):

Because I do think that he allows us to say, I’m so angry right now.

Nicole (23:31):

Yes, absolutely.

Sharon (23:33):

You know I am anyways, so I’m just telling you, I don’t know why you let this happen.

Nicole (23:37):

Right. So I don’t think that’s not being gentle with him, but I like that. I think it’s our, I think you’re right. It’s our attitude of coming, going, all right, God, here’s my day, fit in, you know, where you can, kind of thing.

Sharon (23:47):


Nicole (23:47):

Like actually no, God, this is your day. What do you have me to do?

Sharon (23:50):

Yeah, yeah, exactly.

Nicole (23:50):

And can I maybe do this later? Is it okay?

Sharon (23:52):

Yeah. Yeah. Yep, yep, yep. Or you know, I’m bringing you my plans, but yes Lord, if you distract me, if you move me somewhere else, I say yes. (Nicole: Yeah) Or one of my favorite phrases, I receive this, I receive this, I receive what you’ve put into my life. (Yeah)That is hard to say sometimes.

Nicole (24:10):

Yes, it is. Like, I don’t want it though.

Sharon (24:12):

Especially like when you’re sick, you know? Please heal me. I think you can ask, but I think you also have to say, but I receive this. I receive what you’ve allowed. I had to do that with Meniere’s Disease.

Nicole (24:23):


Sharon (24:24):

Did I want Meniere’s Disease? Not particularly. Would I still like to be healed from it? Oh yeah. But I receive what he’s allowed. So anyways, there you go.

Nicole (24:34):

That’s good.

Sharon (24:34):

How about family?

Nicole (24:36):

Ooh. I think for family gentleness can be shown by making allowances for their faults.

Sharon (24:41):


Nicole (24:41):

Knowing and expecting my husband and my children to make mistakes as I do.

Sharon (24:46):


Nicole (24:47):

But giving, kind of making that space for that it will make me less— I’ll be more gentle with them if I expect it. You know, it won’t be like, what? I won’t be so aghast if they fail me. I’m like, okay, they’re children. They’re going to make a mistake.

Sharon (24:59):

They’re going to fail. They’re going to spill the milk.

Nicole (25:01):

Yes. And be gentle when it happens.

Sharon (25:03):

Yes. Yes.

Nicole (25:03):

I think kind of preparing myself, like this is gonna happen. Josh might not (Sharon: Expectations) throw me a big party. I have to expect this to not be, (Right) You know, that can help, that can kind of help soften things and make you more gentle going in.

Sharon (25:15):

I like that. I like that. And then literally practicing gentle tones. Feeling the anger stir in me. I can remember doing that once with my granddaughter. She was mean to her brother and my first response was anger. (Nicole: I know) And I thought, okay, I did this all wrong as a parent, could I at least get it right as a grandparent? You know? So, I took her away from her brother that she’d been mean to and I wanted to say angry things. (Mm-hmm) Like, you may not treat him like that.

Nicole (25:44):

Right. You’re siblings, be nice, be kind.

Sharon (25:48):

No, but instead I prayed first. Oh, this was so much fun to get a second chance at this cause I can’t tell you the numerous times I failed as a mother. I prayed first and what came out was, Honey, why would you do that to your big brother who loves you so much? She burst into tears.

Nicole (26:06):

Oh my goodness.

Sharon (26:07):

We both cried. I said, I know darling. I know you just got angry. Nina so understands. Cause two seconds ago I was angry with you. I didn’t say that part.

Nicole (26:19):


Sharon (26:19):

But the whole atmosphere changed.

Nicole (26:21):

Oh, wow.

Sharon (26:22):

And instead of her anger, making my anger, which would make her angrier, and then me having to confess to my daughter that I’d been angry at her daughter, which as a grandparent, you never wanna have to do that.

Nicole (26:32):


Sharon (26:33):

Cause you wanna be allowed to touch their children. It worked beautifully. I’m like, why did I not learn this when I was younger?

Nicole (26:39):

I know. Why do we think, it just, it does feel like weakness I think.

Sharon (26:43):

I think it does. But it isn’t. I came alongside her, Honey, why did you do that darling?

Nicole (26:49):

And it, that gentleness led to a true change and repentance in her little heart.

Sharon (26:53):

It did. It was, it worked.

Nicole (26:55):

Because you didn’t, you didn’t trigger her anger to kind of spur up.

Sharon (26:57):


Nicole (26:57):

Because no one ever changes in anger.

Sharon (26:59):

No. No. So that’s how we do it in family.

Nicole (27:02):

Oh, that’s good.

Sharon (27:02):

How about with Christians?

Nicole (27:05):

Ooh, I kind of , you know, I feel like some of our Christians and friends, it feels like family. So just having that gentle heart toward mistakes that they do make mistakes. Being quick to forgive and treating them gently, even if they’re making decisions we don’t agree with. Be firm with truth, but be gentle with them.

Sharon (27:19):

Yes. It’s always truth and love. (Nicole: Yes) Always truth and love. (Yeah) Truth is harsh without love. (It is) Love is mush that doesn’t do good without truth.

Nicole (27:27):

Yes. You need that foundation.

Sharon (27:28):

It’s gotta be both . So yeah.

Nicole (27:30):

Oh, and to be gentle when people approach you with your faults. That was my other one.

Sharon (27:34):


Nicole (27:34):

I receive this. Thank you for your criticism.

Sharon (27:36):

Yes. Thank you.

Nicole (27:39):

That one’s tough.

Sharon (27:39):

Yep, yep, Yep. Saying thank you first is the way to go. (Nicole: Yes) It’s so hard to do, but it, it slows you down. (Yes) And then you’re like, okay, well how am thankful? Thank you that you let me know how you felt. (Yeah) I would so much rather you tell me then have you sit in bitterness.

Nicole (27:54):

Thank you that you love me enough to tell me when I’m doing something or you care about me enough.

Sharon (27:59):

Yeah. Yeah. It’s so good. So good. Galatians 6:1 has something about this too. And it actually goes along with what you’re saying, “Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, (So this is a Christian brother or sister) you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourself. Or you also may be tempted.” (Nicole: Oh) I think that is such good advice. (Yeah). We’re not above sinning. (No) Whatever they’ve done there, but for the grace of God, go we. (Yes) You know? So we don’t come in a spirit of judge-y, I am so much better than you. How could you? (Right) We don’t know their story. (Right) We gently restore. We gently say, Hey Honey, you know, and if they don’t listen, then we’ve spoken truth. (Yes) And we wait. And we pray and we hope that they can be restored. Right? (Yes) Yeah. Cause that’s the goal, is not to shove ’em away so that they, they, you know, die in a dark and lonely hole. (Right) The goal is always restoration.

Nicole (28:58):

Isn’t it? I think we forget that. I think sometimes we’re more focused on the truth being heard or known or letting people know they did not do the right thing. (Sharon: Yes) Now I’m that way like, this is wrong. You need to know this is wrong. (Right) But to what end? Why am I telling this person that? (For restoration) Is it just to tell them they’re wrong or is it because I really want them to be restored to goodness.

Sharon (29:15):

Yeah. And if we really love them, we don’t want the consequences of what they’re doing. (Nicole: Yes) So it comes from a spirit of gentleness and also humility. I could be there. (Oh yes) I wasn’t married to your husband or you know, I didn’t have your childhood. I can’t put myself in your shoes. (Right) Yeah. Yeah. (No, that’s good) That’s really good, I love that scripture. I think we need that scripture.

Nicole (29:35):

We do.

Sharon (29:35):

So non-Christians. I found a scripture for this one too, 1 Peter 3:15, and we’ll have to end there because Oh my goodness, Nicole, we just chatted our way through the whole time. But this is one of my favorite scriptures. So we’ll end with this. “But in your hearts, revere Christ as Lord, (We always do that first) Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.” (We wanna be prepared to share) “But do this with gentleness and respect.” When we share our faith, we do it respectfully. The other person has asked, and we do it gently.

Nicole (30:11):


Sharon (30:12):

Not with a lecture tone.

Nicole (30:14):


Sharon (30:14):

So, oh, let’s pray.

Nicole (30:15):

That’s a good one. Yes.

Sharon (30:15):

Oh Heavenly Father, how grateful we are that you are gentle and humble. You who are King of all and don’t need to be. You are. And we can come to you because of that. Father, I wanna be the kind of person people dare to come to because I am gentle and humble and I won’t make them feel all judged and wrong. God, help us to show gentleness in every contact. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Nicole (30:47):

Amen. Thank you so much for listening as we ponder gentleness. Do you have a story about a person in your life who blessed you because they were gentle with you? We’d love to hear it. Write us to any time It costs a surprising amount of money to run this podcast and we surely would appreciate your help. You can Reviews are always a gift to us so that others can find our podcast. Would you consider writing a review? Thanks. Next week we’re going to discuss Learning Self-Control in episode 106. That’s a tough one. We’re looking forward to unpacking it with each other, studying what God has to say about self-control. Until then, may God bless you with a gentle spirit and a happy heart.

Speaker 2 (31:32):

We are so glad you stopped for a while with us. The Sweet Selah Moments Podcast is a cooperative production of Word Radio and Sweet Selah Ministries. More information about this podcast can be Thank you for joining us.


You can download and print the transcript here.

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