2017

“Let your gentleness be evident to all.”

Philippians 4:5

How funny my God is. Not necessarily “ha ha” funny, but funny as in, I feel my soul lifting and delighting in how He makes His word come alive for me.

As I settled on the word “gentleness” for this year, I searched for it in scripture. I knew it was one of the fruits of the spirit, but wanted to find it in other places. I knew this well known, short sentence but didn’t have its reference memorized. So I googled it. And it lands in Philippians 4:5.

Great. Now, like I usually do, I’ll look it up in context. I really love seeing what surrounds these common, almost “catch phrases” of the Bible.

Do you know what comes after Philippians 4:5? Philippians 4:6.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, with prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Jesus Christ.”

Philippians 4:6. One of the only verses I’ve had memorized for practically my whole life. The one verse I held onto through the years where I lost my Savior’s voice. The verse that feels to me like an anchor; that when I land there, I feel my spirit settle and I know I’m home. That God has always been the same. Never changing, always faithful, even when I am faithless.

As I prayed about the word “gentleness”, I told God I’ve never been more intimidated by a word before. Because this request; this need for meditation on gentleness is so secret. No one sees. No one sees the hidden reasons behind this desperate need for a gentle spirit. No one sees the anger or impatience or unkindness that so quickly spills out of me. I felt silly and afraid and… anxious to bring this request to the Lord, because only He would understand and grasp its depth.

And what did He do? He led me back home. Before I could even name that I was anxious, He told me not to be. He tells me to let my gentleness be evident to all, because He is near.

And then He reminds me that He alone is my anchor and my home and my peace beyond understanding.

As I put these pieces together, I could literally feel my spirit lifting and immediately filling up with the joy only His spirit can give. Even now, as I type this out and read the words that I scribbled in my journal, that same peace is washing over my soul.

Wanna know the other word God highlighted to me for this year?

Delight.

“I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God.”

Isaiah 61:10

Ha! Funny, my God is.

wordoftheyear_gentleness

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