We are often concerned with what we wear. We like to look good or at least be presentable! If our hair is a little wild or our make-up a little smudged, we neaten it up a bit. Many will give themselves a quick once over in the mirror to make sure they can be seen in public.
In our reading from Colossians, we are also instructed to put on more than clothes each day. We are also called to put on compassion and kindness and humility. These traits help us to see others as God sees them and to treat all as worthy of God’s love and of our love. They help us to see the person and not their circumstances.
We are also called to put on gentleness and patience. These two traits help us to treat people as God would treat them. When we are gentle and patient we understand that some people require more time and attention than others and we are willing to offer this. They help us to invest both deeply and long term in others so we can build relationships.
And we are called to forgive as God forgives us. This encompasses two main components: there is no limit to how many times to forgive and it is a gift freely given with no strings attached. People who are in need often walk a hard path in life. It is easy to stumble along this path. Clothing ourselves with forgiveness allows us to give mercy and encouragement over and over and over. This shows we are in it for the long haul.
Lastly we are called to cover all of these traits in love. It binds the other traits together in the perfect unity of the love of Jesus Christ. This love of Christ must be what motivates all the others as well. We cannot be compassionate, kind, … without the love of Christ being the driving force. Without love the other traits will falter and fail. May we clothe ourselves well this day so that all we meet can see Jesus Christ within us and experience His love shining forth from inside of us.
Scripture reference: Colossians 3: 12-14