Once again, I am blessed to share this blog space with Lynn Severance. Lynn's words always bring comfort to me. She has a the gift of staying positive even when living with difficult and challenging medical conditions. I pray she blesses each of you today!
“And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful” (Colossians 3:14-15).
When I see these words, put on love, I wonder how do I do that? Is putting on love like putting on a coat? Is it like putting on the armor that guards us against the enemy’s assaults?
To put something on seems so temporary. I want love to be a permanent part of me and of everything I do.
This Scripture’s exhortation is that over all these virtues, I am to put on love. I back up and find this:
“...you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator”(vs. 9,10).
Being renewed, is a clue. It helps me to grasp that the goal is love and it will become more permanent as I come to clothe myself with , “...compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience”(vs.12).
I knew Christ before chronic illness was a constant companion. I know it is God’s strength I use to live out each day now.
Does the world still pull me in?
The list of worldly ways intrude often -- impatience, anger, a longing for former easier days.
Kindness, gentleness,and patience seem easier to extend to others than give to myself yet I am told to clothe myself in them. Putting on love means, in part, to be thankful for God’s comfort and the new tasks that He helps me accomplish.
I have become more aware that it is only by his grace and leading that I can attempt to love, to receive, to accept and to accomplish the daily tasks at hand.
When I choose to put on love it becomes the glue that binds these virtues in harmony with God, myself, and others. I’d say a good and godly glue is what I long for as Christ and I partner to live out each day in his peaceful strides.
I want to dwell within his chronic comfort rather than my chronic pain. I desire that Christ’s peace-filled presence take up residence in my heart.
Yes, I want to put on love!
Prayer: Lord, help me to put on your love and extend it to all I meet -- and to myself as well. I choose to press on clothed in you and receiving all I need for this day. Amen.
More about Lynn: Lynn Severance is a retired elementary classroom teacher. She lives in Lynnwood, Washington. She writes to encourage others as God has encouraged her during 30 years of living with daily physical challenges. Lynn is a part of the devotional writing team for Rest Ministries, a Christian website that ministers to those who live in chronic pain and/or with chronic illness. Lynn blogs, when she can, at this address. http://lynn-severance.blogspot.com
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