Even though Holy Week is over I want to continue reflecting on the daily scripture readings found through the Revised Common Lectionary at least a few times a week. Today’s readings include the following passage from Colossians. This is 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. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; teach and admonish one another in all wisdom; and with gratitude in your hearts sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
I love the idea of clothing your body with love. Every morning I get out of bed and I choose the clothes I wear. If it is a day where I’m just with my family, it is usually just a pair of jeans and a goofy t-shirt. If It is a day where I’m going to be in the office or going on visits, I put on a clergy shirt and literally clothe my body with a collar–a symbol of my office, my calling, and a reminder to my own heart that I am a servant. If I am going to be leading worship, I might clothe myself in an alb, robe, and usually a stole. I wear a wedding ring except when I’m playing my hand drums (as the metal would ruin the drumhead). I clothe myself in many ways.
The idea of wearing love and letting it bind everything together is both heartwarming and powerful. It is the cloak that covers against a winter chill. It is the garment that wraps you and keeps you dry like a rain slicker. It is the undershirt that touches you and keeps you comfortable and safe even as you wear a scratchy but warm wool sweater.
It is love that comforts and connects all of you as you let Christ dwell in you. It is love that surrounds you as God’s love fills you with wisdom, leads you into song, teaches you gratitude, and is with you in the midst of every challenge you face. It is love that ties together the compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, patience, and forgiveness that marks the life of a Christian. It is love that covers all–even the goofiness of Christians like me!
Love is an important thing. For my family, it is increasingly important. Love can help us through all matters and my family could definitely use love along with the compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, patience, and forgiveness that are part of the wardrobe. As the months go on, you’ll learn why if you keep reading this blog.
Meanwhile, may you find the key to your wardrobe! May you find that there is adventure the likes of which C.S. Lewis would dream of as you try on the clothes of faith from the back of the rack. May you live in peace and may the God of peace clothe you in love!