Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Gentleness--Power Under Control

 My husband's great uncle was killed in World War I. The wheel horses were King horses, and the rest belonged to area farmers.

"Blessed are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth." Matthew 5:5 (NIV)

"You hold Turk while I saddle Ike."

Dennis had taken me home to meet his parents. But mostly to gain horse approval. And the approval of saddle club members.

Me nervous?

Maybe.

Kind of.

A lot.

I rode a grade school friend's horse once. Nearly scraped off half my back as it galloped into the barn.

Anyway, I grasped the end of the reins. Turk happily chomped the grass. And when he "reached the end of his rope," he simply gave a mighty tug of the head and jerked me along behind him. Across the friends' backyard. Over and over.

Chomp. Chomp. Jerk.

Chomp. Chomp. Jerk.

Until the saddle horn caught on the clothesline. He jumped. And both posts collapsed inward, upending their cement "roots."

Good first impression.

Uncontrolled strength. Unharnessed power.

Turk knew his master. And he knew not me.

 Dennis and Turk.

Dennis tried me out on Lady. She limped down the road and tried to bite my toes. When we turned back toward the barn, she broke into a run while I, wild-eyed, grabbed the saddle horn as if it were my last bag of M&M's.

Years later, I came across this verse:

"But let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God." 1 Peter 3:4 (NIV)

So I set out to implement those characteristics in my life.

By not talking.

At the time, I transcribed reports for Heidi, a rehabilitation nurse. She would share things that were going on in her life, and I would listen. In silence. Months later she finally asked me what I was hiding. She even said her thoughts turned to the Mafia. I think she was serious.

My efforts did not produce the quality.

Because I couldn't.

Impossible. 

And, of course, my self-control only evidenced itself with acquaintances anyway. 

At home? Another story.

Uncontrolled tongue. Unharnessed emotions

I knew my Master. But I took the reins.

The Greek for "gentle" in both verses is prays. Also translated "meek." 

Not weak.

A strong word.

A tamed animal.

A broken colt.

Power under control.

A fruit of the spirit.

Gentleness, or meekness, speaks of training and learning to handle heavy loads in the lightest way. A surrender to the master's control.


And a quiet spirit does not necessarily mean a quiet personality. It does not mean silence.

A gentle and quiet spirit is unruffled. Free from frenzy. But it can be angry at the right time at the right person in the right way for the right length of time.

Stability in stress.

Courage in crisis.

Tranquility in turbulence.

Peace in the preposterous.

Impossible on my own.

A gentle and quiet spirit says, "God, I give you the reins in this situation. I accept this in your sovereignty because you want to make me more like Jesus through it. I willingly accept the yoke. I embrace it. And I embrace you as you embrace me."

Controlled by the Spirit.

Harnessed to Jesus.

 Wendy and me. Dennis' parents bought her for me. After I'd learned a little.

NOTE: This post is part of the Blog Carnival on GENTLENESS . For more thoughts, visit One Word at a Time.

Copyright © 2010 by Sandra Heska King

19 comments:

Bridget Chumbley said...

There are so many great thoughts throughout this post. I love the idea of a tamed animal when speaking of gentleness.

"Harnessed to Jesus." That's awesome!

Thank you, Sandra.

Sandra Heska King said...

Thanks, Bridget. I love these carnivals.

Glynn said...

Sandra - this is a marvelous post. It's filled with so many word pictures. Great one.

M.L. Gallagher said...

What a beautiful post!

"Controlled by spirit"

Mighty fine!

Sandra Heska King said...

Thanks so much Glynn and Louise. Hadn't thought about that incident for a long time. Dennis sent me to his dentist, too. Dentist said he thought D wanted my mouth checked like a horse.

Jeff Jordan said...

great pictures, great post

Sandra Heska King said...

Thanks, Jeff! We have so many old pictures. My husband's mom was a great historian.

Ryan Tate said...

Hey Sandra, great post. Thanks for commenting on mine too. I love the phrases and truth you write and how it is all reinforced by scripture.

thank you!

Sandra Heska King said...

Thanks for stopping in, Ryan! And for your encouragement.

deanaohara.com said...

I really like this Sandra Harnessed to Jesus -- very fitting. Thank you for visiting my sight. I'm normally much more sane than my past few posts might show. I admit they are more raw than thought through. My husband just lost his parents to cancer very recently, and in trying to keep things light, I may have caused him more worry, if that makes sense. God controls hallways as well. I'm learning courage.Thanks again for visiting and for the prayers. I like your blog. Blessings Deana

S. Etole said...

I so enjoy your writing and thought processes ...

Duane Scott said...

"Harnessed to Jesus." What a beautiful thought! I love this post!

I just wanted to stop in and say that I am now following your blog again. I used to be, but due to some privacy issues, had to go incognito. I look forward to reading your post again, and hope you follow me back to my new site. Thanks!

caryjo said...

"And a quiet spirit does not necessarily mean a quiet personality. It does not mean silence."

I'm SO glad you said that. Being "blessed" with an extreme extroverted personality, I need to hear things like this so if someone says I'm just not quiet enough as a Christian woman, I can post this quote on my forehead, and stick my tongue out.

Sandra Heska King said...

@deana: Thanks for coming by. I admire your courage and patience as you wait in the hall. But I know it's still scary. Praying.

@Susan: You bless me!

@Duane: So glad you're back!

@caryjo: That was a real breakthrough for me! Go ahead. Post it on your forehead. You might want to rethink the other, though. LOL!

Lloyd said...

Was out surfing Christian blogs and came across yours. I really enjoyed looking over and reading the posts on your blog. May our Lord continue to shine through you. God bless, Lloyd

~*Michelle*~ said...

I'm with Bridget and the others! "Harnessed to Jesus." ROCKS!

Thanks for popping in my world! I'll def. be back to yours! :)

Sandra Heska King said...

@Lloyd: I'm glad you found me and hope there is something here that touches you. Thanks for following and taking the time to comment.

@Michelle: Welcome! I'll be back to visit you, too. :)

Monica Sharman said...

What a powerful transition there, at "It does not mean silence."

Wonderful, wonderful photos, too!

Sandra Heska King said...

Hi, Monica! Thanks so much for dropping in. I'm glad you like the photos. Hubby and I always pulled out the old albums when we came home to visit. Now they're all mine!

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