As the world now travels on a very fast lane, vice is now trumping virtue.
The law is becoming the outlaw. Truth has become relative. Reality has given way to façade. Fiction has sent facts to their early graves. The word ‘tolerance’ is fast becoming archaic, while the tendency to have a short fuse, also known as ‘intolerance’ is now very prevalent.
A soft-spoken person is now portrayed as a timid weakling, while a bold liar is now the hero of all times. This is a time when meekness is defined as weakness. But is this true?
We are at the critical juncture in the history of mankind where the act of meekness is joyfully abused while the meek is delightfully accused: the meek within the religious majority are silenced; the innocent and defenseless peaceful worshipers are harassed, shot or bombed into pieces; the vulnerable but gentle school girls are abducted, raped, forced into underage marriages, killed or forced to be suicide bombers; and poor little school children are brainwashed with contents of a curriculum whose dangerous agenda could be misleading or confusing or both.
Be that as it may, meekness is not weakness. It is a priceless virtue that can never be consumed, denied, canceled or prevented from accomplishing the following great ideals.
Promise of inheritance
The greatest teacher of all times – Jesus Christ of Nazareth said, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth” (in Matthew 5:5). How can the meek inherit the earth?
In fact, Robert Elliot Gonzales said, possibly in response to the same question: “At the present rate, there isn’t going to be much left of the earth for the meek to inherit.”
Why? One can only speculate that Gonzales’s assertion was possibly prompted by the dwindling fortunes of those who decide to play by the rules, especially in the way they demonstrate humility, orderliness, grace, and generosity. But there is an unmistakable promise of inheritance for the meek.
Meekness starts from the heart, and one that seeks the good of all will attract and inherit goodness in abundance. And when one inherits a divine promise, one is bound to operate in the supernatural.
Power to operate in the supernatural
Meekness gives the power to connect to the divine, and moves the mere mortal from the natural to the supernatural.
James Allen said, “He who finds meekness finds divinity; he has realized divine consciousness, and knows himself as divine. He also knows all others as divine, though they know it not themselves, being asleep and dreaming. Meekness is a divine quality, and as such is all powerful.
The meek man overcomes by not resisting, and by allowing himself to be defeated he attains to the supreme conquest”. Meekness gives a man the ability to operate from above, and not from beneath. Meekness punctures the spirit of pride that could ruin a loaded destiny! And when one operates from above, giving and serving are done self-sacrificially.
Ability to be sacrificially selfless so as to accomplish the unthinkable
It is one thing to be sacrificial. It is another to be selfless. But when someone is sacrificially selfless, that person will become a magnet that attracts people – a sun that brings sunshine to others’ cloudiness, and a light that casts away the darkness of those groping in the dark.
According to Tompaul Wheeler, “Meekness is one of those mysterious virtues that we hardly even ponder. We may gossip that some blowhard is hardly humble, but we don’t think, “You know, what that guy needs is a little more meekness.”
Meekness sounds wimpy, almost negative. If someone’s meek, it sounds like they’re a pushover. A doormat. A wimp. But here’s the reality: true meekness exerts incredible power. Meekness is not weakness. Meekness is strength.
It has softened hearts and toppled empires. It’s a power that can’t be countered.” In short, meekness can melt the hardened stony-heart of any Pharaoh, any day!
A Pharaoh’s heart is very self-deluding, proclaiming that it knows it all when it ought to yield the driver’s seat to the ultimate maker of the road, the weather and the automobile.
Wisdom to yield the driver’s seat to the all-knowing One
Meekness is the self-awareness of one’s limitations and powerlessness, hence the wisdom in doing a sweet surrender that sees the driver’s seat yielded to the One who does not only know the terrain but who also determines the destination.
No wonder John MacArthur said, “Meekness is power completely surrendered to God’s control.” A power not completely surrendered to God will be the devil’s tool to destroy its carrier.
This is when true madness unfolds. Madness will insist on driving and will end up in the deep ditch. Meekness will display calmness that will prevent rough driving. Madness will want to claim any and every right, as long as it is self-seeking. Meekness will surrender legitimate rights and privileges without losing legitimacy itself.
Prudence that freezes every storm and perpetuates unshakable peace
A heart of meekness will see contentment in every situation of life. It will be a life that is fully yielded to God, and will flourish forever.
Meekness anchors the soul and energizes the spirit. It guarantees tranquility, promotes inward and outward harmony as well as stabilizing one’s eternal bliss. Meekness activates the keenness to put prudence to utmost use in freezing violent storms; and in perpetuating unshakable peace.
In the words of Philip Henry, “A meek man enjoys almost a perpetual Sabbath.” That is why Lord Acton said “Meekness is the chief grace and perfection of the soul.”
Ability to tame the tiger within and unleash the joy within and without
Meekness guarantees the ability to tame the tiger within while unleashing the joy within and without. Joseph Stevens Buckminster defines meekness as one that strives for equity. Meekness consistently controls the governance of one’s passions.
It wields the scepter of power gracefully. Its actions are guided with care and moderation, and curbed from excesses. It navigates life’s complexities with the gentleness of a dove and the confidence of a lion – like someone who is completely assured of a secured today and tomorrow. George Edgar simply said, “Meekness is really the power of self-control”.
Trending the timeless treasure of innocence
Matthew Henry said, “This meekness is an ornament, that, like the Israelites’ clothes in the wilderness, never waxes old, nor will ever go out of fashion” while alluding to the “white[ness] of meekness and innocency” synonymous with Jesus Christ’s example on the cross, when, according to Howard Carter, he could have summoned Legions of Angels to destroy the world, but still chose to plead for humanity’s redemption.
An anonymous commentator said “meekness is tender; consulting the feelings of others, and willing to bear much pain rather than inflict any.”
Fortification of the heart from seeing or feeling offense
Francisco De Osuna said, “Blessed are the meek, for they are barricaded from the shots of the devil’s artillery and the persecutions of this world by sacks of wool”; and that it “is the strong shield by which the arrows of wrath are broken or turned aside.”
Edgar concluded that meekness “is humility applied to the world, not taking offense at the offenses of the world.” Indeed, it is the harnessing of spiritual strength, sense and sanctity for greater glory, and this is underpinned by Joe Cothen’s statement that “meekness is not weakness, but spiritual strength harnessed for service.”
Meekness displays marvelous magnanimity, and in the words of Michael Youssef, “meekness is when you are in a position of strength and power–yet you choose not to use that power against your opponent, your critic, your accuser, your persecutor.”
Meekness is NOT weakness but a Winner
Meekness is the ability to deploy dignity, wisdom, and patience in convicting a fool about his foolishness and stupidity without incurring any iota of anger but instead attracting loads of praise and admiration.
In meekness there is NO weakness BUT holiness, happiness, fruitfulness, friendliness, righteousness, and richness. Meekness is NOT weakness but a Winner, any day!
(❚ Dr. Sunday Akin Olukoju is a university tutor, a college advisor, a community newspaper correspondent, and the president of a community organization)