Paul, full of the Holy Spirit, professes continually on behalf of the Lord. Today, he reminds us that we have been called by God Himself to serve others. As an example to us of constantly sharing the Gospel, even when it results in tough circumstances, this same Paul is currently serving the Lord in prison.
Paul insists that we must share the truth without compromise, and do so gently. But what does “being gentle without compromising the truth” even look like?
My uncle, Bill Farmer, was an artist. His gallery occupied the third floor of the old Antiquarium bookstore in the Old Market. Tom Rudloff, owner of the building, was the curator of Bill’s gallery. After Bill passed, Tom remarked in the presence of my aunt, Margie (Bill’s wife), that he was angry that Bill’s work didn’t fetch a “good” price.
During Margie’s memorial, Tom spoke, sharing this memory. He said “Margie’s reply was simply ‘Some people who admire Bill’s work don’t have a lot of money’”. Tom finished his story with “Margie was such a gentle soul that it always took me about a week to realize I had been rebuked.”
When we speak the truth without compromise, do we paint a picture with such rough edges that folks pass it by? Or, do we do so with such beauty, such gentleness and such love that people want to save and review it?
But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect -1 Peter 3:15 (NIV)