“Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength“-Saint Francis de Sales
Welcome back! Over the past few weeks, we have studied in detail the virtues of love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness and faithfulness.Today, we are going to tackle the virtue of gentleness.
Merriam Webster Definition and Synonyms of Gentle
- Definition: mildness of manners or disposition
Synonyms: nonabrasive, soothing, tender
Related words: calm, peaceful, placid, quiet, serene, tranquil, compassionate, lenient, merciful
Greek word for Gentleness
The ancient Greek word for gentleness is prautés. It is related to the concepts of meekness and humility.
Favorite Verses on Gentleness
- “To speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people”. Titus 3:2
- “With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love” Ephesians 4:2
Final thoughts on Gentleness
I used to be skeptical about the concept of meekness because I felt it implied becoming a doormat, being passive or weak. But this is not the case. Being gentle or meek is not a weakness but in fact a sign of implicit strength. Jesus in his gentleness and compassion towards others still conveyed a strong sense of power, authority and passion. It is true that gentleness is somewhat dependent on personality but I wonder if it’s something we can learn to do in the spirit of being respectful towards others.
I think gentleness can be applied in many situations such as comforting someone in their sorrow, correcting someone in a firm yet non-judgmental manner or forgiving someone for a past hurt. Being gentle does not equate to being weak nor does it necessarily mean we are always quiet in our mannerisms. To me, it is an act of humility where we are willing to listen to the opinions of others and to be tolerant of others, yet at the same time being brave enough to speak out in a respectful manner when needed.