Meekness in the Crucible
Despite a tough first round loss to tennis superstar Serena Williams, Danka Kovinic was all smiles in her post-match interview, enthusing that playing a night match against Williams in the packed Arthur Ashe Stadium was a dream come true.
Aussie Rinky Hijikata also fell to the hands of 22-time grand slam winner Rafael Nadal. Nevertheless, Hijikata took time to sign autographs before exiting the court. Nadal, appreciative of the fan support, also spent a lengthy period of time ensuring attendees received memorabilia and autographs.
But little can compare to Naomi Osaka who, true to her character, can only say good things about her opponents–win or lose–and even asked to share her interview with her defeated opponent Coco Gauff.
As amazing and refreshing as Osaka’s meekness is, it shouldn’t be. In fact, this should be a defining attribute of our character when in peace and in suffering.
Ezekiel was made to suffer so as to endure with humility, to be a sign to the people of what was to come to them, to reveal the Lord to them, and also to be a symbol of the quiet but resolute brokenness Jesus would take on (Ezekiel 24:15-27).
Moses also suffered for 40 years due to Israel’s obstinance, and yet he interceded for them on their behalf when they fashioned a golden calf as their new god (Exodus 32:1-14). In his appeal to grace and mercy for his people, Moses demonstrated his love for them. No matter how much they annoyed him and put his own life in jeopardy, Moses loved them enough to intervene, just as Jesus asks us to do in Matthew 5:43-48.
But Moses struggled to maintain his meekness, and sometimes he did lash out because his anger overpowered his faith.
Solidifying our faith on the Rock will help us to better exhibit longsuffering, humility and meekness in all situations. We may not always be as gracious as Osaka, or as patient as Moses, but their examples can remind us of Jesus. Jesus’ way, while contradicting the world, can bring peace to ourselves and others.
Connecting: Was the extent of Jesus’ meekness a part of His humanity that could be achieved by any of us?
Sharing: Does meekness equate weakness?
- No, meekness is only achievable when we have strength in God’s love
- No, because meekness is showing great restraint and patience
- Yes, because it means others can walk all over us; just look at how the Romans spat on Jesus
- Yes, that’s why meekness is associated with lambs which are kind of dumb and helpless
- It’s situational
Applying: Someone wronged your friend who is now being passive aggressive/aggressive/confrontational. Ask them to imagine that the world is watching, and consider how that will change their approach.