So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It's your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it. — Colossians 3:12-14, The Message
I hope you had a wonderful holiday! Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year. It is a marvelous time spent with family and no agendas. Hopefully, yours was just as sweet.
As we return to Colossians we find Paul doing Paul things again. He is reminding the Colossians of who they really are in Christ. This description is their truest selves.
The kicker? The description is our truest selves too.
I have to be honest with you. When I read this list of “clothing” that we are to put on I find it deeply challenging. So many of these things are so counter-cultural to our way of life. Yet, when we find someone who lives out compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline, even tempered, forgiving, and love we want to be around them all the time. Don’t we?
Many of us will read this and our immediate thought will be, “But what’s the limit? I will not be a doormat!”
That’s the wrong question.
The real question that we must ask ourselves is this: How can I develop these things in my life?
How do I become more compassionate?
How do I become more kind?
How do I become more humble?
How do I become more quietly strong?
How do I become more disciplined?
How do I become more even tempered?
How do I become more forgiving?
How do I become more loving?
You see, if this is the best and truest version of ourselves then we need be about working on these things in our lives.
One of the things that I’m learning while I try to develop these things is that I have little time to worry about others. What I mean, is that by focusing my attention on becoming the best and truest version of who I am supposed to be my posture toward others becomes more welcoming and loving. I am learning to recognize the reality that others are on the same journey. So, instead of me being angry, upset, or offended by them I grow in my desire to walk with them and join them in their journey.
Truly, these few verses are a call to #LoveWell. Let’s walk this journey together…
Today is “Giving Tuesday”. If you have found that these little devotionals have in some way been helpful to you would you please consider sending a gift along to The Antioch Movement? This is the congregation that some friends and I planted that began in Ypsilanti, MI but now has expanded into a variety of communities. Through the Antioch Movement I am able to be a full-time pastor in our various communities.
Thank you for considering giving a gift.
Here is the link to donate: The Antioch Movement