This information comparing the Biblical meaning of being “meek” to the dictionary came from the television-series “The Chosen” Bible study for Season 2 Episode 3. They did such a good job I thought it appropriate for this article. As parents, we constantly navigate and instruct our children in their response to life and how it comes at them. We want them to learn, grow and thrive through obstacles that so easily beset them. Humility is focused on a person’s self-concept; meekness is focused on a person’s behavior toward others because of his/her self-concept.
Meekness is a rare, misunderstood, and unadmired trait. We prefer bold, brave, impressive, and fierce. Yet, blessed are the meek. In a culture that puts self-protection, self-seeking, and self-empowerment above all else, meekness is a lost art. By shunning pride, a humble person avoids boasting to get credit for himself while a meek person avoids retaliating to get revenge for himself. Both the humble person and the meek person seek to glorify God in how they respond to their circumstances by trusting Him for things like validation, encouragement, exoneration, and justice.
Contrary to Merriam-Webster, the Bible depicts being meek as having a quiet strength – one that’s hidden beneath the surface, never wielded with recklessness or cruelty, but carefully deployed with gentle precision and thoughtfulness. A meek person isn’t deficient in strength or courage; rather, he or she has chosen a posture of humility. Putting others ahead of ourselves requires more strength than most of us have. Meekness is an attitude of the heart, not a result of our DNA, our upbringing, or our inability to stand up for ourselves.
Matthew 11:28-30: “Then Jesus said, ‘Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.’”
It’s been said that a meek person is not a weak person, but rather like a tamed lion – someone with “strength under control.” God doesn’t value what the world values. I Corinthians 1:27-29: “Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And He chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. God chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important.”
Blessed are the meek for they will be taken care of (Psalm 37:21-22); they will be lifted up; they will be avenged, and they will be like Jesus (Psalm 3:3) (Matthew 5:38-42; Matthew 6:31-33). Have mercy on us Lord that we might, with your help, model meekness and help our children do navigate the same! As parents we often find ourselves trying to change the events and people that impact our children; however, they are best served when they learn how to respond to those outside influences in a healthy and intelligent way.