“Containment” is not just a word, but a way of life. God Himself contains us through concealment (as he did with the Samaritan woman), through endurance (as the apostle Peter endured and denied), long-suffering, through an act of mercy (such as the story of the sinful woman - John 8), and finally peace.
First, I want to talk about the word “containment” itself. Each of its letters has a meaning:
+ (A) That is, feeling of the other. The nature of containment is that you have sensitivity to the other. This feeling requires respect for the feelings of the other.
+ (B) love and dialogue with the other, as containment means that the two parties are conversing, and they show love for each other. This applies to spouses, and between parents and children.
+ (C) It is to meet, communicate or be here for the other; Especially in times of crisis. Do not run away from the crisis, and remember the words of St. Paul, “Be men” (1 Corinthians 16:13). In a time of crisis, do not stand sarcastically or silently, for the Bible says: “For whoever knows how to do good and does not do it, it is sin to him” (James 4:17).
+ (D) It means meekness, so in time of trouble, do not get angry and the voice does not rise, because fire does not extinguish fire. Be calm and meek, as Jesus did to the woman who was caught in the same act. anger, loud voice, intense emotion, and insulting others; All of these do nothing but make the crisis worse and worse.
+ (E), which is the continuation of this virtue, that is, you have the nature of containment. And as I have repeatedly mentioned to you, the first thing the father did in the parable of the prodigal son was that he embraced his son and embraced him before he spoke.
Let’s see some pictures of human containment...
Elkanah was married to Hannah and had no children from her, and Hanna was depressed because of this. And why don’t you eat? Why is your heart troubled? Am I not better to you than ten sons?” (1 Samuel 1:8). He consoles his wife, and the phrase even has a kind of fun or a kind of euphemism. I think because when Hannah heard his words, she laughed, even though she was crying. And then God gave them Samuel the Prophet and four other sons. One phrase contained the double of a wife, and you husband can say three or four words that contain the double of your wife, son or daughter.
The money of Abraham and Lot grew, and their property expanded, and a dispute over pastures occurred between the slaves of this and that, and it almost caused a dispute between adults, but our father Abraham contained the situation, and left Lot to choose the land he wanted, and thus the crisis ended; And God blessed Abraham and promised him and his descendants to own the land.
The fathers chose the deacon Stephen to be the first among the seven deacons, and he was professing his Christianity, and the Jews arrested him, tried him, and stoned him while he was praying: “Lord, do not charge them with this sin” (Acts 7:60), and all Christianity benefited from the young Saul who was martyred, The clothes of the stoning men, Paul the Apostle became the greatest preacher in Christianity, in this St. Augustine says: “Without Stephen’s prayer, the Church would not have won Paul the Apostle.” St. Stephen contained the situation with his meekness and triumphed despite his martyrdom, and brought us Paul the Apostle.
Abigail married Nabal (and his name means: a fool), and when the prophet David asked Nabal to give him and his men some of the sheep shearers, Nabal expelled them and said harshly to them, so David decided to take revenge on Nabal and his family. And here the wise wife went to the middle of David’s way to speak to him and greeted him with gifts and food then spoke quietly to him saying: Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, who has sent you today to meet me. May you be blessed for your good judgment and for keeping me from bloodshed this day and from avenging myself with my own hands. (1Samuel 25:32-33).
She contained the situation with a word. All of you memorize the phrase: “A soft answer turns away anger” (Proverbs 15:1); Try to apply it... the sweet word comforts people.
* Barnabas the Apostle:
Saul of Tarsus was educated at the University of Tarsus, and his colleague was Saint Barnabas. After Saul was baptized and became Paul, the apostle Barnabas contained him and presented him to the rest of the disciples, and then they went together to preach. On the second trip, they differed because of St. Mark, so Paul took Silas and set out to preach, while Barnabas took Mark and set out on another journey. Barnabas the Apostle contained the crisis, and several missionary trips took place.
* The father of the prodigal son
In the parable of the prodigal son, when his father embraced him in his bosom upon his return, and here the father represents God for the sinful man. The son returned to his father from the pig farm, with no sight, no smell, no shape, no health, but his father, when he saw him from afar, had compassion and ran and greeted him on the road, and took him in his arms before the son spoke. And they slaughter the fatted calf. In the same parable we see the reverse image, the eldest son who, when he heard the sound of joy and happiness, refused to enter the house and did not know how to contain the situation, but rather offended his brother and father, who said to him with the utmost love: lost and is found” (Luke 15:32).
Saint Monica, the mother of Saint Augustine, contained her son, and she prayed for him for 18 years, but her prayers and tears came as a result, and her son repented real repentance, and recorded his confessions in the book of a handsome deacon, then a priest, then a bishop. Monica became the mother of tears, winning her son and husband to Christ.
. . .
Containment is a lifestyle that includes the warmth of love, tenderness, gentle questioning, gentle touch, cuddling, thanksgiving, understanding, respect, security, and cheerfulness. Containment is a very important virtue in family life, and a virtue that preserves the safety of our homes, and saves us from many troubles, and I am not talking about containment between spouses only, but they must contain their sons and daughters, whether young or old.
To our God be all glory and honor from now and forever, Amen.