Week 1 - Day 1: HOW DO I REFLECT GOD'S COMPASSION?
Colossians 3:12-14 (NIV)
12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Human beings are naturally sinful (Romans 3:23). Because of that reality, it’s not that difficult to be selfish, stubborn, unforgiving, or angry; especially when something doesn’t go our way in life. It is too easy to stay mad when someone has wronged us or hurt us. This is our human sinful nature at work in our daily lives. Thankfully, God is so different. Because we are “in Christ” (see Ephesians 1:3), we are set apart to a whole new way of living. We now have the ability to be holy (free from sin’s control), because God is holy. God helps us do things that go against our sinful nature; things like, forgiving someone when we feel we have every right to hold a grudge. God helps us show gentleness or compassion to someone when we would rather give them a piece of our mind!
Being God’s chosen people (in Christ) gives us the way to live in unity together with others as this is what God desires for our lives here on earth. We are able to call upon the Holy Spirit to aid and lead us to repentance and reconciliation with others. Sometimes this means we swallow our pride and take the first step to apologize to someone and bring harmony back to the relationship. When we show love, compassion, and forgiveness to others, we are reflecting God’s compassion to the people around us, whether we feel they deserve it or not. Those around us will know that we are God’s chosen people when we clothe ourselves with virtues like compassion, kindness and gentleness because it is so different than the selfishness and self-preservation in our culture today. “Clothing ourselves” with these virtues is a conscious decision I make each day by calling on the Lord throughout the day whenever a situation calls for me to reflect God with these Christ-like virtues.
What are some practical ways I can reflect God’s compassion to those in my oikos this week?