by Ann Cooke
Often I find myself standing in my closet wondering what in the world I will wear for the day.->
I think to myself, “That’s too dressy” or “That’s too casual”- Isn’t it funny how we put so much emphasis on what we wear and how we look?
So does God, but in a different way.
Paul reminded the church of Colosse that since they were raised with the Messiah, they were to seek those things that are above, not what is on the earth- (Col. 3:1). They were to put off the “old man”; i.e., the former life of sin, and put on the “new man“, one who is clothed in Christ’s righteousness.
Among these “things that are above” is something called gentleness.
“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” Col. 3:12.
Webster defines gentleness as “mildness of manners or disposition.” One’s disposition is the tendency to act in a particular way, a usual attitude or mood. Wow! This makes you stop and think, doesn’t it?
What is your usual attitude or mood? Is it one of gentleness?
A common response to this question is, “I try to be gentle, but sometimes it’s hard”. Some situations are too overwhelming for gentleness. Sometimes the people in our lives are frustrating, and when emotions get out of control, gentleness isn’t usually on the forefront of our minds.
Ephesians 4:2 says, “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.”
Sounds like a heavy assignment, doesn’t it? How does God expect us to live up to these lofty goals? Well, the thing is, He doesn’t. The “things which are above” are made up of His righteousness! When we yield to His Holy Spirit inside us, He clothes us in that righteousness. Doesn’t that thrill you? It is our job to learn His ways through His word and yield to its work in our hearts.
We must remember, the moment we are saved we are justified, meaning God looks at us through the blood of Jesus as if we had never sinned. However, becoming sanctified (holy) is a lifelong journey, not of trying harder to live by God’s word, but by yielding more to the spirit within us to produce fruit (Galatians 5:22-23).
Being gentle is a fruit of the spirit, not the flesh. We cannot always be gentle, but God can. He is ready and willing to help. Just call on Him!
Our attitudes are sometimes hard to control, changing with each situation. But Jesus places within us at the moment of salvation His Holy Spirit to guide us into the right attitude and actions that make us “holy and acceptable to God” (Romans 14:18).
So don’t fret, dear Christian, if you find yourself floundering in this new life.
You are not alone!
Galatians 2:20 says you have been crucified with Christ and it is no longer you who live but Christ in you. The life you now live in the body, you live by faith in the Son of God, who loves you and gave himself for you!
He walks this journey of the Christian life all the way with us!
When you’re picking out your spiritual clothes, remember Who is helping you decide on the right words and actions. He will lead you into gentleness and it will look perfect on you!
Are you struggling with what you put on spiritually?
Please comment and let’s talk!
Bio: Ann Cooke is a Christian wife, mother, grandmother of four and aspiring writer. Born in Iowa, but a southerner for thirty-eight years, Ann makes her home in South Carolina with her family. Her involvement in church, missions and local ministries serves as avenues for her to do what she loves best, sharing God and His word and encouraging others.
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