“The expression of Christian character is not good doing, but God-likeness.”
I go through the same routine every day. I open the closet door and try to decide what to wear, how I will clothe myself for that day. I usually start with a pair of pants and then figure out which blouse goes best with it. Some days I have more to choose from, depending on whether or not I’m caught up with my ironing. And because ironing is one of my least favorite tasks, I often have slim pickings to choose from! In God’s closet, though, there is much I can choose to wear.
“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.” (Colossians 3:12-14) God has provided us with a closet full of godly character.
Compassion is what I need to clothe myself with when I’m with the elderly or those who are physically ill or emotionally depressed. I want my concern to help them not feel so alone. I desire to choose to wear the soft sweater of kindness in the face of rejection. When I go in the opposite spirit it takes the wind out of their sail. Perhaps that person is having a hard day and a kind response may turn their direction around.
I hope to put on the hat of humility when I bump up against arrogance. I try to dress myself with a gentle response when dealt harshly by a store clerk. I desperately need to put on the outfit of patience when I’m driving. Moms of preschoolers may require an extra dose of the patience apparel. When I’m offended I strive to wear forgiveness as my outfit. Forgiveness is easier said than done, but I have found if I reflect upon all that Christ has forgiven me of, my heart is more positioned to forgive others. The secret to forgiveness is to “forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Last of all, I take out the overcoat of God’s love to cover all the character traits.
No longer do I have the excuse of having nothing to wear when God has provided me with a closet full of godly character. Let’s see, what shall I wear today!
“If I take care of my character, my reputation will take care of itself.”
Dwight L. Moody
1. Looking back on your weekend, which pieces of clothing from God’s closet do you wish you had put on?
2. Which of the godly character traits above will you choose to clothe yourself with this week?