Meekness and marriage

DO you ever think much about meekness? If you're like me, you might have been thinking that meekness means weakness or submissiveness. But through a deeper study of the Bible I am understanding meekness as a moral quality of great strength that is really indispensable to all relationships, especially marriage. Just what is meekness? It can be helpful to think of it as a humble yielding of a self-defeating way of thinking or acting to the divine law of love.

Think about Moses. The Bible indicates he was a man of considerable strength and occasional anger. After leading the Israelites out of Egypt, he was called by God to receive and deliver the Ten Commandments to his people. After Moses had angrily smashed the sacred tablets (upon descending the mountain and seeing the Israelites once again pursuing idolatry), he had to retrace his steps and receive the Commandments again. This time he delivered them in their ageless and holy continuity to his people. Later we find this wonderful description of Moses: ``Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.''1

There was nothing weak about Moses, yet we have this Biblical characterization of him as meek. Moses' meekness was indicative of his spiritual strength and of his willingness to yield to God's loving authority.

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Yielding meekly to God's all-embracing love is important in marital matters. Moses had to turn from his anger and retrace his steps. And don't we sometimes need to turn from our anger or hurt involving a spouse?

Of course, there must be something to turn to in such situations. And there is -- God and His love for man. Because this love is from the one all-powerful God, the creator Himself, it is able to conquer all. This love holds each individual in a singular, spiritual relationship to God. This relationship is complete. It never comes and goes. It is timeless and eternal, because God is eternal Love itself and because our real and only being is His spiritual likeness, inseparable from Him.

It's difficult to underestimate in a marriage the healing effect of allowing Love to govern our actions. It's difficult to underestimate the value of a simple, kind word or a helpful hand at the right time. A willingness to yield meekly to divine Love's impulsion enables us to extend that kind word or offer apology if needed.

Yet there may be times when we feel wronged and an expression of love isn't forthcoming from our spouse when we need it most. Still, there is our Father-Mother's unfailing love. Because it is always present and active, we can always find comfort and strength in it.

We may think that God's love is meant for us only in extreme difficulties. But can't we turn to it every day? God's love is infinite. It is here, first and last. As Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, says: ```God is Love.' More than this we cannot ask, higher we cannot look, farther we cannot go.''2

To be meek is to turn to this great love of the Father-Mother and away from the ups and downs of a selfish, personal sense of love. Far from denying us the normal affection and appreciation of a loving marital relationship, such a meek turning can only deepen these feelings because we are beginning to understand their real, spiritual source.

1Numbers 12:3. 2Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 6.

You can find more articles like this one in the Christian Science Sentinel, a weekly magazine. DAILY BIBLE VERSE: Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any. Colossians 3:12,13

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