QUESTION: My grandfather is gruff, rough and tough; never smiles and has nothing nice to say about anyone, yet I love him.

Is there any hope of breaking through his thick facade with the Gospel of Christ that speaks of the fruits of the Spirit? I doubt that he will ever become meek and mild, but I just long for him to find happiness in this life. – C.G.

ANSWER: The word gentle was rarely heard of before the Christian era. This high quality of character was a direct byproduct of Christian faith.

The Bible says, “The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy” (James 3:17).

Charles Dickens wrote, “A man can never be a true gentleman in manner until he is a true gentleman at heart.” I have seen tough, rough, hardened men open their hearts by faith, receive Christ as Savior, and become gentle, patient, merciful gentlemen.

There was once a man in London who served as a chauffeur.

It was evident he had missed little of what this world had to offer. As he performed his duties, he found himself at an evangelistic meeting and was moved by the Holy Spirit to give his life to Christ.

This man who seemed so detached suddenly was overcome by the truth of the Gospel. Such a marked change came over this man. His hardness disappeared; his veneer of sophistication melted away. He was a new creature! He threw away his X-rated literature, began to memorize the New Testament, and took on the true marks of a Christian gentleman, exhibiting the fruit of the Spirit: gentleness, goodness, meekness (Galatians 5:22-23). We must never give up on praying for the lost and being examples of righteous living as modeled by the Lord Jesus.

– This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.

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