A gentle answer turns away anger,
but a harsh word stirs up wrath.
O to master the art of gentleness! Harshness comes so easily, so naturally. Gentleness is a spiritual gift and a learned trait. Responding in anger flows like fire from a mouth scorching all it touches. Gentleness must be nurtured and coaxed. It requires discipline and judgment and patience. Harshness is a science producing wrath, frustration and injury. Gentleness is an art producing peace, friendship and healing. A stony heart produces harsh words. The tender heart produces words of life. Harshness is akin to weakness as gentleness is akin to strength. It is the weak soul that consistently responds with biting words producing anger and hate. The strong soul speaks from meekness and produces the fruit of goodness and grace. Gentleness. Soft answers.
Learn to be gentle. Learn to be strong. Learn to lock your lips when harshness raises its ugliness in your mind. Let the mind of Christ through the work of discipline and love produce gentleness in your conversation until it is the nature of your talk. Let the harvest of the Holy Spirit build gentleness in your speech and life. The harvest of the Spirit contains gentleness. Let Him nurture it in you.
A bruised reed Jesus would not break. A smoldering wick He would not put out. Yet, Jesus was the picture of strength, power and authority. He was no milk-toast. He was Meekness personified. He was Gentleness incarnate. He turned away anger and brought an end to wrath.
Thanks be to God.