Scripture Reading: Colossians 3:12-17
As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. –Colossians 3:12-14
I have been “bearing” with myself for the past three or four weeks. I prefer the words “putting up with” myself. The Greek word used in this scripture anechó means to endure, bear with, have patience with, suffer*. There is some kind of virus, one of the common cold type, going around that last for four to six weeks off and on and I got it. The holiday season is not a good time to have any kind of a cold much less one that just drags on. I had my family party last weekend. With that major event concluded, I now must deal primarily with myself and I am not good company.
Recognizing that fact, made me realize how important Paul’s advice in his letter to the Colossians is. We really do not know what any other person may be dealing with at any point in time. Paul is saying when we are working together as the Body of Christ we need to cut each other a little slack and we surely do not need to project our own problems onto others.
Our children’s Christmas program at the church this year was about as flawless as any children’s Christmas program could be and was very well done. My table of friends watching this could not help recalling the fight of the lambs that occurred several years ago where two preschoolers had a rather strenuous disagreement on where they each were to stand as they played their roles as the lambs by the manger. We had a good laugh about it, recognized what great teens they had become and wondering where they are now as adults. What we consider as disasters at the time rarely are and they may become fodder for legends to come.
Prayer: Lord, grant us the gift of forbearance with each other and even with ourselves as we work together toward your purposes. Amen.
All scriptures are quoted from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of American. Used by permission. All rights reserved.