Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Philippians 4:4-5 (NASB)
Today's thoughts from today's verses:
Today's passage speaks of a "gentle spirit." In another place in Scripture where a "gentle spirit" is mentioned, these words are included, "which is precious in the sight of God." If a "gentle spirit" is so valuable to God, then the question I must ask myself is: do I have a gentle spirit? If not, then I must ask myself, why not? The starting point for anything is making a commitment to pursue it. You cannot decide in one moment to have a gentle spirit and then have it the next moment. But you can decide to make the commitment to pursue having a gentle spirit and then it becomes possible for it to come about.
Our passage says, "The Lord is near." If you have made the commitment to pursue a gentle spirit, then the reality that the Lord is near can be very instrumental in your actually becoming one who has a gentle spirit. If your pursuit of a gentle spirit is faltering, perhaps you are more focused on people than on the Lord's nearness, or perhaps you have forgotten that his nearness give you immediate access to the help you need, or perhaps you have blinded yourself to the fact that your harsh and forceful treatment of others is being done in the presence of the Lord who is near.
Our passage says we are to "Rejoice in the Lord always." Rejoicing in the Lord and having a gentle spirit go hand in hand. The one who rejoices in the Lord is one who delights in him. The one who delights in the Lord is one who values very highly the gentle treatment of the Lord in their daily walk with him as their actual Lord and Master. Our mistreatment of other people has much to do with our resistance to our Lord and Master's authority in our lives and our being caught up in trying to exercise authority in the lives of other people. Having a gentle spirit is the product of our relationship with God. When a gentle spirit becomes the hallmark of lives it will "be known to all men." When this is true of us then it will be true that God is bringing glory and honor to himself through us and our good relationships with other people.
Today's prayer response from today's thoughts:
Lord, help me to become immersed in your nearness and your gentle treatment of me in the midst of all that is included in my life experience. Forgive me for losing sight of you in so many ways and for getting wrapped up in issues and struggles with other people that are far more trivial than they seem when I am in the middle of it all. I guess that's the key. Help me to be more in the middle of your nearness, than the middle of the messiness of relationships. Amen!
Posted on Tue, November 3, 2015
by Alan Porter