"But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere." - James 3:17
My husband is tall and built like a football player -- we're talking 6'4" and the ability to lift a truck. His younger brother is even bigger -- he even cracked his grandmother's ribs with his strong bear hug (true story!).
Upon the discovery that our first baby was on the way, I will admit to laying awake at night wondering if he'd ever figure out his strength. How could this big, burly, stronger-than-Goliath man ever handle a newborn with the gentleness I knew they would need?
And then delivery day came, and my muscle man turned into muscle mush when he held our first baby in his arms. The way that he cradled our new child and spoke with such tenderness, sweetly sharing all of the great things he had planned for them to do together...well, I was blown away.
Now, that newborn is 8 years old and that child still needs gentleness -- not just in physical ways, but with his words, tone of voice, the way he approaches situations. There is definitely a time where our sons need his aggressiveness -- I, as their mom, certainly can't give them the chances to burn of that energy the way their dad can with wrestling, etc. But those times are balanced by the times when our sons need gentleness and sweet words from their dad, knowing that they have a safe place to fall and grow with him, as well,
Perhaps gentleness is more of an approach to life than a specific characteristic to develop. My sons wouldn't be who they are (nor would my husband be) without those aggressive streaks they possess -- but I think it's okay to teach them how and when to use it.
Brooke shared this in the LG:
"Since they were born, we've whispered these words into our sons' ears:
God made men to protect women and care for them. God made you a big brother! Your job is to protect your little brother, not hurt him. There's a time to play and a time to listen. If you can't listen, you have to feel (true in so many aspects of life). God wants you to use your strength to protect, not to hurt. Superheroes don't look for fights, but they will fight to protect others. It's OK to want to be the best, but the best people in life are the ones who serve others. A gentle word turns away wrath..."
Today, as you pray the ten prayers in the gentleness chapter, consider this thought: Helping our sons to define and set parameters for their aggression can help develop a worldview of gentleness.
So how do you do that? How do YOU define and set parameters for your sons' aggression? Comment here or on the Facebook page.