“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth”Matthew 5:5
This has been a rough week, a hard month, and a year that keeps throwing roundhouse rights.
I’ve been meditating on the Sermon on the Mount and the Beattitudes. The verse I’ve quoted is one which I feel is very timely for us as a church.
At face value, these words cause us to furrow our brow and wonder what Jesus was talking about. The word meek in English is one we are not familiar with.
In English, meek means enduring injury without resentment, deficient in spirit or courage, easily imposed upon, weak, submissive.
Not exactly a word which inspires us. Our definition of either masculinity or femininity would reject this picture.
Jesus spoke Aramaic which was translated into Greek. The Greek word translated as meek is Praus. This word is taken from the concept of meeking a horse. Meeking takes a powerful strong animal and trains it to exhibit a gentle strength and an incredible amount of self control. A well trained horse responds to his masters commands.
Meeking does not strip the horse of its power, but rather harnesses it. It takes the untamed, wild energy of an unbroken horse and focuses it towards a goal.
We need the harnessed and directed strength of the church to fight what is happening in our nation.
We are seeing many demonstrations of strength played out 24/7 on our news feeds.
- Arrogant ones
- Brutal ones
- Racist ones
- Judgmental ones
- People behaving badly from leadership to the least
- The occasional display of humility is shocking for its rarity
The church unified has the power to paint a different picture.
- A gentle strength
- Strength to control of our words and our actions
- Strength to respond to our Master’s commands
- Strength to listen and empathize
- Strength to weep, mourn, and grieve
- Strength to step away from the totality of our political preference when the words and actions of those elected officials are hateful
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the Earth
Church, it is time to rally and to use our gentle strength to come alongside the people of color in our local churches.
Jesus got angry. Jesus stood up to religious leaders. There is a time and a place for it. The events unfolding in our nation have put this conversation in the headlines. When the news cycle fades, we must continue this journey.
It’s a long one, it will require painful introspection to see our own racist and stereotypical tendencies.
We cannot expect unbelievers to suddenly get this revelation or begin to behave in appropriate ways. Sinner sin. That is what they do.
We can be different. We must be different.
Meek is not weak. Those who are meek are blessed.