Taking in news, listening to talk-shows, absorbing social media posts and even talking to neighbors can sometimes be toxic. Just think about any day’s news.
The President tweets out against someone then tweeters light up; pro or con. Churches launch grievances against police. Politicians launch ugly volleys against those of the other party and turn on each other with fury.
Contention sells. There will always be a market for things that make us mad.
Sometimes we just need to reset. The new year is a good time for that.
One of my favorite scriptures is Philippians 4, versus 4-9. In the NIV it reads, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
Think about it
We must be aware of our surroundings; watch news. Listen to your favorite talk show host for some good talking points. Just make sure you are full of life-giving stuff, not contention.
Let your gentleness be evident to all. Do it with your family, team, congregation and even the dude that comes in with an attitude. Of course, ready to protect immediately, but not contributing to the same contentious culture people are tired of and fleeing from.
Make sure your land is where seldom is heard a discouraging word.
Remember that meekness is not weakness; meekness is managed strength.
Be that kind of person, that kind of parent, that kind of leader in 2020