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photo: weekly snaps graphic: Martha G. Brady

photo: weekly snaps
graphic: Martha G. Brady

So here is our starting point once we are “in Christ.” We are GOD’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved. Doesn’t that touch you at a deep place in your heart?

It does me. It makes no difference what color I am, how beautiful…or not; how talented…or not…GOD has chosen me to be in His family and it is not based on anything about me…positive or negative.

Once we are in the family, we are encouraged to be clothed with: compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

Bearing with each other, forgiving each other and learning to forbear with each other…that is part of the process. If you have been following our I John study, you know that is one of the evidences of the person who is in the family of GOD. It is being together that builds our love for each other.

Yes, even the opportunities to forgive, to forbear…they help me learn to love others. Hard to believe, but it is so true!

And as we allow the peace of GOD to rule over us, we will experience His peace as well.

And to top it all off…something like a cherry, thankfulness. It is so easy to forget. so easy to breeze past. But making the time to do it will help us with all the other areas.

Learning to find something about the other person where I can be thankful helps me see them in a better light and makes it easier to forgive even though they have hurt me.

Taking time to be thankful for what GOD has done for me helps me have a better perspective on the other things GOD is doing in my life.

Am I being pushed in relational situations where I am being called to love in difficult situations that are painful? Knowing I am dearly loved by GOD gives me hope to continue persevering in those difficult situations because I have the security of knowing I am loved.

Is the process of being clothed in compassion or humility, for example, becoming difficult? Knowing I am doing it from the point of already being accepted by GOD, being chosen, gives me the perspective of knowing I am not trying to earn His love, but am growing in grace. It doesn’t feel nearly as stressful that way.

As you read through this passage, does it encourage you?

What is most encouraging as you read it?