Colossians 3:12-17 (NIV)

12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves1 with compassion, kindness, humility,2 gentleness and patience.3 13 Bear with each other4 and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.5 14 And over all these virtues put on love,6 which binds them all together in perfect unity.7 15 Let the peace of Christ8 rule in your hearts, since as members of one body9 you were called to peace.10 And be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ11 dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom,12 and as you sing psalms,13 hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.14 17 And whatever you do,15 whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks16 to God the Father through him.

Colossians 3:12 (NIV)

12 As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience.                            

DEVOTION – Mark Karpinski (North Carolina)

I am an avid fan of the Baltimore Orioles baseball team.  I will often wear an Orioles hat, shirt, or jacket, and my car has an Orioles license plate on the front.  These things are external signs that let others know at a glance that I support and cheer for the Orioles.

I would also like to believe that others can readily see that I am a Christian.  But this demands much more of me than simply putting on a hat or T-shirt.  The third chapter of Colossians says that I need to “clothe [myself] with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”  I should also be forgiving.  Most of all, I need to “put on love.”

I struggle daily with such a tremendous challenge.  I try to meet this challenge with regular worship, prayer and Bible study, as well as reading Christian literature and watching how mature Christians behave.  I also remind myself that whatever I do, whether in word or deed, I do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus.  (See today’s reading.)  I realize that I cannot meet this challenge on my own.  I must rely on the Holy Spirit to help me overcome my weakness.  Only with the Spirit’s help can I clothe myself as God wants me to.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: How will I clothe myself with God’s love and compassion today?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, help us to clothe ourselves with the truth of your word as we begin each day.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen.