“Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering;” Colossians 3.12
If a lost person looked closely at your life or mine, would they say, “I’d like to be like them. How can I become a child of God?” Neither of us is naïve enough to think that our lives don’t need some work. In this verse where Paul is instructing the Colossians on how to live for God, he gives some very tangible and practical advice. Let’s take a look at it.
- Put on bowels of mercies. In order to do that, we must remember whose we are: “the elect of God, holy and beloved … ” We are not robots attempting to represent a God who may or may not care about this world. We are chosen by God – holy and beloved. We need to reflect God’s mercies to others – believers and non-believers alike.
- Put on kindness. It doesn’t cost us anything to be kind. We certainly want others to be kind to us, whether we say it or not.
- Put on humbleness of mind. No one likes an arrogant person. We may or may not feel intimidated by them but we certainly don’t like being around them.
- Put on meekness. I often define meekness as a steel hand in a velvet glove. I think of Joseph, Mary’s husband as the personification of meekness.
- Put on longsuffering. This may be the hardest of all. Being patient comes hard for me. The Bible says: “tribulation works patience.”
You will notice that Paul says we are to “put on” these things. They do not come naturally. For some, it requires extensive prayer for God to instill and manifest these traits in our lives. Could I suggest that we each examine our lives before God and see if we are actually displaying these virtues? If we are willing to ask the Holy Spirit, He will help us manifest these traits so that God can be glorified and we can be usable vessels. Just my thoughts …