Thursday, February 10, 2011

"God, please give me a gentle heart"

There are so many hard things going on right now.  I find myself sitting down to pray and just being at a loss for the right words or really any words at all.  I'm so thankful that at these times God knows exactly the thoughts and concerns that we don't have words to express. 

The words I do know to say today..."God, please give me a gentle heart"

Once in a while we meet a gentle person. Gentleness is a virtue hard to find in a society that admires toughness and roughness. We are encouraged to get things done and to get them done fast, even when people get hurt in the process. Success, accomplishment, and productivity count. But the cost is high. There is no place for gentleness in such a milieu.

Gentle is the one who does "not break the crushed reed, or snuff the faltering wick" (Matthew 12:20). Gentle is the one who is attentive to the strengths and weaknesses of the other and enjoys being together more than accomplishing something. A gentle person treads lightly, listens carefully, looks tenderly, and touches with reverence. A gentle person knows that true growth requires nurture, not force. Let's dress ourselves with gentleness. In our tough and often unbending world our gentleness can be a vivid reminder of the presence of God among us.

- from Henri J.M. Nouwen's Bread for the Journey.

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