1 Timothy 6:11-16
It is [Christ Jesus] alone who has immortality and dwells in unapproachable light (v. 16). I want to make this my mantra for whenever I feel a judgment forming. It reminds me that it’s best to leave the judging up to God, who alone dwells in unapproachable light. The rest of us are united in our flaws.
Early one morning, I went to play with my son who had been waiting patiently for an adult to wake up. He is old enough now to notice when I am only physically present with him, when my mind has wandered away from his block-building into the realm of grownup thoughts. As he was telling me about the structure he had built, I glanced at my phone. The next thing I knew, he had slapped me hard across the face. It was a shock. I became angry. I told him that it wasn’t okay to hit me like that.
But I also thought about how absent I had been with him and how I could have been more present. As a mother, I lose my temper way more often than I would like. After I reprimanded him, I also apologized to him.
Paul reminds us to pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance, gentleness (v. 11b). I find that it is easier to practice forgiveness and gentleness with small children, who are still learning how to regulate their behavior and emotions. It can be harder to do in adult relationships. It requires humility. But all of us are children of God who alone dwells in unapproachable light.
How do you pursue gentleness when you are angry?
Gracious God, who gives life to all things, help me take hold of the eternal life to which you call me. Amen.