You can read yesterday’s post here where I began to pose the question about meekness, and what it means.
Today there’s not so much a definition as a picture from the Bible.
There’s a story about the meekness of Abram in Genesis 13. For a while, Abram and Lot had been traveling together, but because of the size of both of their households (many goats, wives, servants, and such), the land couldn’t support them. So they came to a fork in the road.
Now in my imagination, this moment looks like a cartoon. The road forks, and to the right the sun is shining, there’s dew on the ground, little bunnies and deer are scampering together, the grapes are as big as beachballs – you get the idea. To the left – well, to the left there are holes in the ground, smoldering embers, dead trees, and growling wolves.
That’s probably a little extreme, but there was clearly a difference in the two roads. One road appeared to be better than the other. And Abram does something unthinkable – he gives Lot the choice:
Then Abram said to Lot, ‘Please, let’s not have quarreling between you and me, or between your herdsmen and my herdsmen, since we are relatives. Isn’t the whole land before you? Separate from me: If you go to the left, I will go to the right; if you go to the right I will go to the left’ (Genesis 13:8-9).
Lot chose the good road. The well-watered road. The easy road. And Abram let him do it.
What does this have to do with meekness? I think it goes back to what we said earlier, that meekness involves harnessed power, taming emotion, and humility. But in a 21st century context, one in which you have to look out for number 1 or nobody else will, Abram stands in stark contrast. In meekness, Abram did not worry about advancing His own cause.
Maybe that’s meekness, especially today. It is the confidence that God is our advocate, that He will provide and care for us, and so there is no need for us to advance our own cause. Lot advanced himself, and that effort got him right in the middle of Sodom and Gomorrah. Abram was meek, and he became the intercessor for Sodom and Gomorrah.
God, give us the meekness to believe that if you are for us, none can be against us. Rob us of the need to advance our own cause and status. Replace it with confidence in your will and fatherhood.