Colossians


Colossians 3-4 (NLT link) 

Discover His heart:  He has chosen us to be His holy people and expects us to act and look the part.

“Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.”  Mark Twain’s words seem to span the generations – now that’s a good writer!  Naked people may make an impression, but it’s not the right one to make.  Clothes make the man, dress for success and similar prevailing thoughts have generated a multi-billion dollar clothing industry.  The movers and shakers of our day proudly wear their labels – Gucci, Versace, Karan, Coach and Jimmy Choo – and they have paid dearly for them.  At one time I was involved in this industry, a real clothes horse as they say, but I changed my focus many years ago to a more eternal line of clothing.  Don’t get me wrong, I still love the feel of great fabric and a well-made garment, but really, one day, moths will eat them all! 

@ Colossians 3
“Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” (13)  Paul was encouraging those who came to Christ to go ahead and get a new wardrobe, and who doesn’t like that idea.  It’s a matter of trading the old clothes of selfishness, anger, pride and impatience for mercy and kindness and the other fruit of the Spirit (Ephesians 4).

Layer them on and let them be the new you, and forgive everyone in the process.  Talk about the ultimate makeover!  And after we’ve worn our new duds for a while, it doesn’t hurt to go through our clothes occasionally and see what needs to be replaced. Sometimes we slip back into those old clothes of the past, thinking they’re still acceptable, and we discover in the process a little unforgiveness, pride or unkindness.  Allowing the Holy Spirit to examine our hearts will keep us spiritually dressed for success.

Then, just to complete the ensemble, “Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony.” (14)  Protect all that new fine clothing with a big beautiful coat of love, and we will live in harmony with one another and show ourselves to be “the holy people He loves.”  These clothes really do make the man or woman!

I would be remiss if I failed to mention that additional clothing will be needed – an entire suit of armor, but that’s a topic for another day @Ephesians 6. 

Moving Forward: I’m dressing for success today, examining my wardrobe and making sure it will show me to be the holy woman He loves and has chosen me to be. 

Tomorrow @ Leviticus 16-18

Colossians 1-2(NLT link) 

Discover His heart: The Creator of all things hears and answers our prayers

There’s just something really good that happens inside of me when family and friends tell me they are praying for me – if I’m discouraged, hope builds within me; if I’m sick, faith starts to mount; and if I’m fearful, peace floods my soul.  We all need prayer, and we’ll take any prayer that is offered to God on our behalf.

On the flip side, I love to pray for the needs of others with hopeful anticipation of answered prayer, watching as our creative God brings solutions.  I’ve learned that promising someone to pray for a need can be easily sabotaged by a busy life, and often those mental notes to pray for someone cannot be found as effortlessly as they once were.  Keeping a prayer journal is helpful, and simply asking God to bring to our remembrance those needs we’ve committed to prayer also brings results.

Then there is the specific prayer request that comes my way now and then that challenges me to find the will of God in how I really should be praying for that need.  I know, I know.  God is bigger than all this.  He remembers all the needs that I forget, and He, of course, knows how to answer every need. However, like most believers, I take prayer seriously because I want my prayers to be effective. 

@ Colossians 1
Paul certainly understood the importance and impact of prayer in the life of a believer and focused on it in all of his letters. In our reading today, he was writing to the Colossians, a group of believers he had never met, to encourage them and to help them stand against an onslaught of heresy that he had heard was mounting in the church.  In verses 9-12, Paul shared an excellent example for us of how to pray for others, whether we remember the exact need or not.  I don’t know a missionary, leader, friend or anyone on the planet who would not appreciate this prayer.

When we pray for others, ask that God will help them:
1)  Know His plan for their lives (9)
2)  Grow in spiritual wisdom and understanding (9)
3)  Understand how to honor and please the Lord (10)
4)  Produce every kind of good fruit (10)
5)  Grow in the knowledge of who He is (10)
6)  Have endurance and patience through His glorious power (11)
7)  Be filled with joy and thanksgiving (11-12)

When we pray to God, we pray in Jesus’ name, and Paul gave one of the most powerful endorsements of Him in verses 15-20 that is found anywhere. “Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.  He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation…He holds all creation together…Christ is the head…Christ is the beginning…through Him God reconciled everything to Himself.”

It’s almost impossible to believe, yet true – this amazing, glorious creator of all things, the Lord Jesus, hears and answers my prayers! 

Moving Forward: With humility and awe that He hears my requests, I will pray for those dear ones in need of His touch today. 

Tomorrow @ Leviticus 13-15

Colossians 3-4 (NLT link) 

Discover His heart:  He has chosen us to be His holy people and expects us to act and look the part.

“Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.”  Mark Twain’s words seem to span the generations – now that’s a good writer!  Naked people may make an impression, but it’s not the right one to make.  Clothes make the man, dress for success and similar prevailing thoughts have generated a multi-billion dollar clothing industry.  The movers and shakers of our day proudly wear their labels – Gucci, Versace, Karan, Coach and Jimmy Choo – and they have paid dearly for them.  At one time I was involved in this industry, a real clothes horse as they say, but I changed my focus many years ago to a more eternal line of clothing.  Don’t get me wrong, I still love the feel of great fabric and a well-made garment, but really, someday moths will eat them all! 

@ Colossians 3
“Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” (13)  Paul was encouraging those who came to Christ to go ahead and get a new wardrobe, and who doesn’t like that idea.  It’s a matter of trading the old clothes of selfishness, anger, pride and impatience for mercy and kindness and the other fruit of the Spirit (Ephesians 4).

Layer them on and let them be the new you, and forgive everyone in the process.  Talk about the ultimate makeover!  And after we’ve worn our new duds for a while, it doesn’t hurt to go through our clothes occasionally and see what needs to be replaced. Sometimes we slip back into those old clothes of the past, thinking they’re still acceptable, and we discover in the process a little unforgiveness, pride or unkindness.  Allowing the Holy Spirit to examine our hearts will keep us spiritually dressed for success.

Then, just to complete the ensemble, “Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony.” (14)  Protect all that new fine clothing with a big beautiful coat of love and we will live in harmony with one another and show ourselves to be “the holy people He loves.”  These clothes really do make the man or woman!

I would be remiss if I failed to mention that additional clothing will be needed – an entire suit of armor, but that’s a topic for another day @Ephesians 6. 

Moving Forward: I’m dressing for success today, examining my wardrobe and making sure it will show me to be the holy woman He loves and has chosen me to be. 

Tomorrow @ Leviticus 16-18

Colossians 1-2(NLT link) 

Discover His heart: The Creator of all things hears and answers our prayers

There’s just something really good that happens inside of me when family and friends tell me they are praying for me – if I’m discouraged, hope builds within me; if I’m sick, faith starts to mount and if I’m fearful, peace floods my soul.  We all need prayer, and we’ll take any and all that are offered to God on our behalf.

On the flip side, I love to pray for the needs of others with hopeful anticipation of answered prayer, watching our creative God bring solutions.  I’ve learned that promising someone to pray for a need can be easily sabotaged by a busy life and those mental notes to pray for someone cannot be found as effortlessly as they once were.  Keeping a prayer journal is helpful and simply asking God to bring to our remembrance those needs we’ve committed to also brings results.

Then there is the specific prayer request that comes my way now and then that challenges me to find the will of God in how I really should be praying about that need.  I know, I know.  God is bigger than all this.  He remembers all the needs that I forget, and He, of course, knows how to answer every need; but like most believers, I take prayer seriously because I want my prayers to be effective. 

@ Colossians 1
Paul certainly understood the importance and impact of prayer in the life of a believer and focused on it in all of his letters. He was writing to the Colossians, a group of believers he had never met, to encourage them and to help them stand against an onslaught of heresy that he had heard was mounting in the church.  In verses 9-12, Paul shared a great example for us of how to pray for others, whether we remember the exact need or not.  I don’t know a missionary, leader, friend or anyone on the planet who would not appreciate this prayer.

When we pray for others, ask that God will help them:
1)  Know His plan for their lives (9)
2)  Grow in spiritual wisdom and understanding (9)
3)  Understand how to honor and please the Lord (10)
4)  Produce every kind of good fruit (10)
5)  Grow in the knowledge of who He is (10)
6)  Have endurance and patience through His glorious power (11)
7)  Be filled with joy and thanksgiving (11-12)

When we pray to God, we pray in Jesus’ name, and Paul gave one of the most powerful endorsements of Him in verses 15-20 that is found anywhere. “Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.  He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation…He holds all creation together…Christ is the head…Christ is the beginning…through Him God reconciled everything to Himself.”  Almost impossible to believe, yet true – the Lord hears and answers my prayers! 

Moving Forward: With humility and awe that He hears my requests, I will pray for those dear ones in need of His touch today. 

Tomorrow @ Leviticus 13-15