What Are You Wearing?

10 Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator.12 Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Colossians 3:10 & 12

In Colossians chapter 3, Paul encourages believers to make the changes needed to fully live the life God intended. He gives guidance to things we need to stop doing and the things we need to do, including what we should “wear.”

So, after two months under shelter in place – how are we doing? Are we continuing to put on our new nature of tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience? I know there have been some days that I have forgotten to put on at least a couple of those – how about you?

Paul tells us, as God’s people, we are called to be holy and there is intentionality in how we live. He goes on to suggest that putting on our new nature is like putting on clothes. Just like getting dressed in the morning, and yes, we should all be getting dressed, even while sheltering in place (insert smiley face). We need to put on or choose to wear qualities of holiness, reflecting the character of God. What do those clothes look like? Paul tells us.

Mercy – not giving someone what they deserve. Has someone offended you or hurt you? Do they “deserve” your anger or revenge? Tenderhearted (sympathetic) mercy.  Hurting people hurt people. They probably need this gift of mercy more than they need what you would humanly like to give them.

Do you run into people or are you living with people, children or adults, who are selfish, hurting, preoccupied, on edge, frustrated? Kindness creates an environment more conducive to encounters that are respectful and pleasant.

Put on humility, being modest about who we are, positions us to be open to learning from others, valuing everyone we meet. Who doesn’t want to feel valued when you interact with someone?

Gentleness. When I speak. When I act. When I answer someone.

And then, patience. That elusive quality we want but don’t want to pay the price to get. Waiting. It’s so hard. We can get almost anything we want immediately. Why do we have to wait for patience?

Patience is a gift from God and from us to others. Patience allows us to see God at work in our lives and the lives of others. Give someone the gift of patience today. It’s ok to wait. Ask God to meet you in the waiting.

So when you get up, as you put on your clothes remember to also intentionally put on tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. At the end of the day think back over your day. How did it go? How did these qualities affect your day and the people you encountered? Is there one that is easier for you to live out than the other? Talk to God about your experience. What’s your prayer for tomorrow?

Linda Waldo
Spiritual Formation Pastor| New Covenant Church