Did you know the Bible talks about style?
I learned a long time ago that dressing up on the outside might make me feel valuable, but the truth is, you and I both know that is not what determines beauty. We all have seen beautiful people who exhibit ugly behavior. We have also seen many of those that society would call “poor”, or down-and-out that seem to glow with contentment.
I am reminded today of my sweet father-in-law, who by the world’s standards might have seemed average. He didn’t possess a higher education or world-wide fame, but to those who knew and loved him, he was priceless. This kind and loving man wasn’t perfect, of course, but he demonstrated unconditional love and devotion to not just his family and close friends, but treated with respect anyone that God placed in his path.
“Just a kind word”.
When he was in his last days, a nurse at the hospital asked if there was anything else she could give him, and that was his response. I will never forget the grace with which he responded, and I am reminded almost daily that this is a quality that I want desperately in my life.
Regardless of circumstances.
This is a familiar passage to many, but I think God just wanted to remind me–and maybe someone else that has forgotten–
Therefore, as God’s chosen ones, holy and dearly loved, put on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another if anyone has a grievance against another. Just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you are also to forgive. Above all, put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. And let the peace of Christ, to which you were also called in one body, rule your hearts. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell richly among you, in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another through psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Colossians 3:12-17It matters how you treat others. And most often it is not complete strangers that we forget to be kind to–it’s those in our own home.
Most often it is not complete strangers that we forget to be kind to–it’s those in our own home. (ouch)
I don’t know if it’s because we are in our comfort zone or because we are being lazy, but if we are comfortable treating our family in a way that we would never dream of treating a stranger–or someone that we highly respect–then we are falling short of what God wants for us. Respecting another is more than an action. It’s an attitude. And often our attitude is expressed through our words.
It’s not just what you say or what you do, it’s how you say it and how you do it.
“Be alert, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong. Do everything in love.” 1 Corinthians 16:13-14