Whenever we find ourselves irritated, discomposed, fretful, impatient, or wretched!
(James Buchanan, "A Meek and Quiet Spirit" 1840)
"The ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God" 1 Peter 3:4
Let me very briefly adduce some reasons and motives fitted to persuade you to the acquirement and cultivation of this meek and quiet spirit. It is here described as a beautiful and lovely disposition of mind — it is called an ornament. Wherever a meek and quiet spirit is consistently exhibited in the character of a Christian — it is universally felt and owned to be most attractive and engaging.
Those professors who lack a meek and quiet spirit, or who are as yet greatly deficient in it, are on that account less esteemed — their society is often felt to be disagreeable rather than pleasing — their conversation is not so sweet or refreshing.
Accordingly, a very large portion of God's Word is devoted to the inculcation of those principles by which this meek and quiet character is formed. And a large part of God's providential discipline is designed to produce and strengthen it in our souls.
No one can estimate how much his own personal comfort depends on his possessing a meek and quiet character. Such a spirit easily endures much which frets and discomposes those who are less thoroughly subdued.
An affront which exasperates a proud man — a meek man calmly suffers.
An injury which a revengeful man resents — meekness overlooks or forgets.
And trials which scarcely ruffle the composure of a quiet and contented mind — are sufficient to toss the wicked as on the waves of a troubled and boisterous sea.
Whenever we find ourselves irritated, discomposed, fretful, impatient, or wretched — we may rest assured that our misery arises much more from the distempered state of our souls, than from any external cause. We should seek relief, by acquiring that meek and quiet spirit, which will raise us above the influence of external circumstances, or enable us calmly to endure them.
Finally, let it be remembered that this meek temper of mind is not natural to any of us — it must be acquired and cultivated. Nor is it a plant of easy and speedy growth — it is the gradual product of much discipline, and of growing Christian experience. It seldom springs up, so as to reach maturity, until after many a storm has rooted and established it — nor even then, unless it is implanted and watered by the Spirit of God. "The fruit of the Spirit is meekness, gentleness, long-suffering."
"Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls." Matthew 11:29