By Ruth Jarman
Nothing is so strong as gentleness. Nothing so gentle as real strength.
Saint Francis de Sales (1567 - 1622)
The eighth fruit of the spirit is gentleness. Jesus was "gentle and humble in heart" - demonstrated all through his life from his birth in a stable to his calm acceptance of death upon the cross.
Are you gentle? I'm sure you are with children and animals, but have you ever thought about whether you are gentle to the earth and what being gentle to the earth would look like? Take the school run, for example. What would be the gentlest way to do it - in a 4x4 or on a bicycle? Driving might be gentler on your children's bottoms and protect them from the rain, but what about being gentle to the world, which our children will inherit? All of us parents need to remember that when we are gentle to the earth, for example by leaving our cars in the drive, we are also being gentle to our children's future.
What better time to be gentle to the earth than when we are celebrating the coming of God as a gentle babe!
Give gently this Christmas!
Give a tree! Either
1. Post a cheque for £10 together with your name and address and the name and address of the certificate recipient to Trees for Life, Wells for India , The Winchester Centre, 68 St George's Street , Winchester SO23 8AH and they will plant a tree and send a certificate. See www.wellsforindia.org .
2. Give ½ an acre of threatened rainforest for £35. Go to www.coolearth.org.