CLOTHED WITH COMPASSION
12 Put on therefore, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, a heart of compassion, kindness, lowliness, humility, and perseverance; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, if any man has a complaint against any; even as Christ forgave you, so you also do. (WEB)
I love the descriptive way that the Amplified Bible translates Colossians 3:12...Clothe yourselves therefore, as God’s own chosen ones (His own picked representatives), [who are] purified and holy and well-beloved [by God Himself, by putting on behavior marked by] tenderhearted pity and mercy, kind feeling, a lowly opinion of yourselves, gentle ways, [and] patience [which is tireless and long-suffering, and has the power to endure whatever comes, with good temper]. (AMP)
We are called to clothe ourselves with compassion, kindness, lowliness, humility and perseverance. All the while being patient with one another, tenderhearted and forgiving. Earlier in the chapter, the Apostle Paul uses the same clothing analogy and tells us to rid ourselves of all our old garments that include greed and covetousness.
My prayer today is that we would know that the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) is in essence the garments that our heavenly Father intends for us to wear. When people look at us and see His love wrapped around us instead of our bitterness, it will be quite attractive to them. When people see us wearing clothes of compassion instead of rags judgment, they will be drawn to the One who has covered us with His love.
When the prodigal son returned home to his father in Luke 15, his garments were filled with filth and shame. After all, he was on his way home from working in a pig pen. But when the father saw his son far off, he ran to him, and kissed him, and covered his filth with his own royal robe.
May we all experience the covering love of our Heavenly Father who does not judge us for wearing the stinking garments of a fallen world. Instead He encourages us to throw off all the things that hinder us (Hebrews 12:1-2) so that He can clothe us with His Son.
11 He said, “A certain man had two sons. 12 The younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of your property.’ He divided his livelihood between them. 13 Not many days after, the younger son gathered all of this together and traveled into a far country. There he wasted his property with riotous living. 14 When he had spent all of it, there arose a severe famine in that country, and he began to be in need. 15 He went and joined himself to one of the citizens of that country, and he sent him into his fields to feed pigs. 16 He wanted to fill his belly with the husks that the pigs ate, but no one gave him any. 17 But when he came to himself he said, ‘How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough to spare, and I’m dying with hunger! 18 I will get up and go to my father, and will tell him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight. 19 I am no more worthy to be called your son. Make me as one of your hired servants.”’ 20 “He arose, and came to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him, and was moved with compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. 21 The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in your sight. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ 22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe, and put it on him. Put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf, kill it, and let us eat, and celebrate; 24 for this, my son, was dead, and is alive again. He was lost, and is found.’ They began to celebrate. (WEB)