If you struggle how to be gentle in the way you speak or act towards others, let me suggest some doable work around to develop the grace of gentleness.
Gentleness is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit in Galatians 5. As Christians, we must exhibit gentleness in the way we speak and act. It is an outward display of our changed life. People will doubt our Christianity if we remain to be sulky, irritable, harsh and easily-angered. Worse, we misrepresent Jesus with our ungentle countenance.
- Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. This is James’ instruction to the readers of his gospel. We should listen more than we should speak. Doing otherwise is rude.
- Be more emphatic. Whenever you feel tempted to comment about something or someone, try wearing their shoes first. If you know where people are coming from, you will be more considerate next time.
- Be intentionally gentle. Before you spew those words or give unsolicited comments, remind yourself that it is more important to win the person more than winning an argument. Practice gentleness on a regular basis, and be more intentional.
- Be ready to overlook an offense. The reason why people are harsh towards others is because either they easily get offended or they don’t want their rights to be stepped on. Learn to surrender your rights and privileges from time to time. As Proverbs 19:11 says, “good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.”
We may have different personalities and temperaments but let us remember that the world does not revolve around us. Let us win people’s affection by being gentle towards them, instead of expecting them to adjust to us.
Do you have any additional tips on how we can practice gentleness towards people? Share your thoughts below.