12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. 14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.
The third chapter of Colossians reminds us about how we are to live our lives now that we are born again; not as carnal people but as spiritual beings. It begins to remind us of the things or habits that we are to put off. From verses 12, it tells us what we are to put on. We could look at it as the Christian apparel that we are to have on at all times.
The first two things that we are reminded to put on are tender mercies and kindness. When you think about it, these two have to do with how we relate to the others around us. To have mercy toward another means showing forgiveness to one whom you have the power to punish or harm. The question we should then ask ourselves is; how do we relate with those who do us wrong? Do we extend tender mercies towards them or are we quick to seek revenge and even pronounce curses on them and in the process harbouring un-forgiveness in our hearts? Think of the many times we sin against God even as believers and yet He has given us the reassurance in His word in Lamentations 3:23 that His mercies are new every morning. In the same way, we should be quick to extend mercy towards those who wrong us.
We are also admonished to be kind in our dealings with others. To be kind is to be generous, considerate and friendly. The Bible tells us that we should consider others as better than ourselves and truth be told that is one of the hardest things to do because our natural inclination is to look out for ourselves first. We are to be hospitable and the bible says that in so doing some of us have entertained angels without even knowing it.
If those around you were asked to describe who you are, would kind and merciful be two words that come up in their description or would their absence be loud?
It is time to do some soul searching and if these traits are missing from our lives then we ought to put them on just like Paul told the Colossians. No one can put them on for you, you have to lay down bitterness rage and un-forgiveness in order to put on mercy because you cannot put on the two at the same time and in the same way you have to give up selfishness in order to embrace kindness. The choice is ours to make.
So, as you interact with others, what will you choose to put on today?