Meekness Is Not Weakness
“Blessed are the gentle, because they will inherit the earth.” — Matthew 5:5
In Coach John Wooden’s Pyramid of Success, he talks about the character quality of fight, which is a determined effort. He calls it “intensity under control.” A player with fight has a contained fire burning in his or her belly, which ought to emerge as focused passion.
As I read about fight in Coach Wooden’s book, I wrote the word meekness in the margin. Christ described himself as meek, and He calls on us to follow His example (Mt 5:5). Meekness is not weakness. The meaning of the word in Greek, which was the original language of most of the New Testament, is “power under control.” Another word for meekness is humility. Picture a bridled stallion following the lead of its master, and then contrast that with a wild, untamed, and free-running horse under the control of no one. Without the bridle, a stallion running loose in the pasture may be majestic, the symbol of raw power, but a stallion without a bridle is useless to man. The power that makes him so majestic must be harnessed in order for him to be useful.
The same principle applies to a talented linebacker who doesn’t act like part of the team; he does his own thing instead. An unbridled linebacker doesn’t listen to the coach and won’t carry out his assignments. He merely tries to wreak as much havoc on the offense as possible. While his power is the envy of every coach, his unwillingness to submit makes him worthless to the team, because his power and passion are not focused.
We must be meek to fulfill God’s purpose in our lives. We must be bridled—power under control—for God’s control. Christ was meek, and we must be also. Matthew 5:5 teaches that when we are surrendered to Christ, bridled by Christ, and living under His control, then we are blessed. The closer our lives line up with God’s purpose for us, the more blessed we will be.
1. Why do you think pride is the opposite of meekness?
2. What enables us to be meek?
Extra Reading: Matthew 11:28–30; 2 Timothy 4:7
Lord, teach me about meekness. I am so prone to pride and self-sufficiency. Help me see the value of being bridled by You, allowing You to be in control of my life. Amen.