Alphabet of Manly Virtues: “G” Is For “Gentleness”

28 May

(“The Alphabet of Manly Virtues” is a 26 post series examining various character traits of godly men. Check back every Tuesday and Thursday for new posts! To view other entries in the series, click here.)

 

gWhen I sat down to write this blog I tried to think of a virtue that often gets overlooked, especially with men. So I asked myself, “What is the last virtue I would ever want to read about, especially on a blog about manliness?” It came to me pretty quickly. The last “manly” virtue I would ever want to read about is gentleness.

Gentleness and manliness almost seem contradictory. I mean what guy wants to be remembered as “Gentle”? Not this guy! If you asked me: “Daniel, if you could be Martin Short in Father of the Bride 2 or Matt Damon from The Bourne Ultimatum, which would you chose?” I would choose Matt Damon (i.e. Jason Bourne) every time. Sorry Martin, but designing a baby nursery is not as cool as dominating hand-to-hand combat.

But gentleness is important; in fact, it’s a fruit of the Spirit. That means that if you and I are walking in the Spirit – gentleness will be a defining factor of our lives.

I think men need to reconsider gentleness as a manly virtue. Instead of pushing it off as “soft” or “wussy” I think we need to claim it and make it a part of our lives for the following reasons:

  1. Our wives need to be treated gently.
  2. Our kids need to be treated gently.
  3. Our churches need us to model gentleness.
  4. Our society needs us to model gentleness.

Instead of going through each of these points, I think it would be more helpful for this blog to start the conversation. In other words, what do you think: why do you think it is important for men to model gentleness in their families, churches, and societies?

And as you formulate an answer, consider the following example.

Recently, I bought a new CD player and speakers for my 1997 Money Green Corolla. This car was sexy and fast with a 1.6L 100 horse power engine that redlines at 75 mph. One time I passed a beamer (who was parked on the side of the road). In other words, the new $100 CD player would be more powerful than the car itself.

Anyway, I was working on the driver’s side door, and located the clips that hold the paneling onto the frame. All I needed to do was pull off the paneling and I would be able to replace the door speaker. I grabbed the panel with two hands, and gave it a little tug – nothing happened. I pulled a little harder – still nothing. Instead of stopping and looking up the correct procedure on YouTube, I decided to give it one more tug. I slid my right hand to the top of the panel, slid my left hand to the bottom, and pulled hard – the panel popped off. Along with half of the clips that hold it into place. In other words, I broke the door.

What I didn’t know, was that there was a small screw hidden behind the handle. If I had known where to look, I could have unscrewed the little screw and the panel would have practically fallen off the door. But instead, I did the manly thing and showed that door panel who’s boss. Unfortunately, that meant that the door panel never stayed on correctly, and to this day will randomly fall off the door when I open it too quickly. I should have taken the time to look up instructions, and then GENTLY loosened the screw and lifted off the panel. Oops…

It’s great to be a man, and be “manly” but some of the strongest men are able to recognize when to use their strength and when to be gentle.

Now back to the question:

Why do you think it is important for men to model gentleness in their families, churches, and societies? Comment below…

-Daniel Day

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Daniel is the Director of Content for Axis, the author behind 10 Days Without.  He married his  high school sweetheart, and lives in Colorado with her and his 2 boys. Connect with Daniel on Twitter, Facebook, and his website.

2 Responses to “Alphabet of Manly Virtues: “G” Is For “Gentleness””

  1. More Than A Beard May 28, 2013 at 20:28 #

    I think one of the biggest ways that I struggle with gentleness is in how I listen to my wife when she has a problem.

    When something is weighing on her and she feels like sharing it with me, I immediately snap into “Mr. Fix-It” mode and come up with a million different solutions on how I think I can make the situation better rather than just sincerely and silently listening as she pours her heart out to me. I want to take action and dive right in, but she needs me to just be present and handle the issue at hand with gentleness.

    -Dave

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