Looking Good for the Holidays

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” —Colossians 3:12 Once the holiday season begins, people tend to shop more and feel pressured to perform, to look right, to dress right.  May I encourage you, take a moment to look at your wardrobe—the one that really matters.

Everyday you choose how to clothe your physical body. But God has designed an “inner” wardrobe for which He recommends five important pieces:

HUMILITY:  The ancient world did not respect humility, so this was a pretty radical recommendation. Pride and domination were admired. The humility of Jesus is not thinking poorly of oneself, but rather having the proper estimate of who you are, and thinking of others more.

GENTLENESS (also called meekness):  Meekness is not weakness; it is power under control. This word is used to describe a soothing wind, a healing medicine, a colt that has been broken. Someone who blesses others through quiet strength.

PATIENCE (or long-suffering):  Long suffering literally means “long temper.” It is fine to get angry for the right reasons, for it can be a trait of holy character. But short temper out of control is not holy. We need to be understanding and merciful with each other. We’re all human!

FORGIVENESS:  This world is really a very unforgiving place. To be like Jesus is to be forgiving, to show mercy to people who wrong us, to love them even when they hurt us. Forgiveness opens our hearts to the fullness of God’s love!

 LOVE:  True love is a heart melted in genuine compassion for others, mingled with the actions that demonstrate the love in our hearts. As Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 13, “the greatest of these is love.”

Everyday, we can make a conscious decision to “clothe” ourselves in the Lord, and to ask Him to design who we are, and how we will interact with other people.

For all the hours we spend shopping for and preparing our outward clothes, and for the holiday season, I pray that we will see our inner wardrobe as an even higher priority.