14 …put on and wrap yourselves in [unselfish] love, which is the perfect bond of unity [for everything is bound together in agreement when each one seeks the best for others]. – Colossians 3:14
Ever thought of yourself wrapped up, head to foot, enveloped with love for others? That is the picture Paul paints of us born again followers of Christ. I’m not there yet. But I’m a workin’ more on being that.
wrap yourselves in unselfish love
Success at being accepting of others, actually being loving…starts with dealing with what we don’t even want to admit we have: self-righteous pride. Reading about what Jesus had to go through for us on earth… helps me keep working at being more humble.
6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God [set aside self-righteous pride], so that He may exalt you [to a place of honor in His service] at the appropriate time,
7 casting all your cares [all your anxieties, all your worries, and all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares about you [with deepest affection, and watches over you very carefully].
8 Be sober [well balanced and self-disciplined], be alert and cautious at all times.
That enemy of yours, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion [fiercely hungry], seeking someone to devour.
9 But resist him, be firm in your faith [against his attack—rooted, established, immovable], knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being experienced by your brothers and sisters throughout the world. [You do not suffer alone.]
All that stuff
If I’m wrapped in unselfish love, nothing can upset me, irritate me, cause me to flair in anger… because all that stuff is absorbed by my skin of love about me (Colossians 3:14).
What little irritations can affect this type of love? What ginormous hatred against me is able to prick through this cocoon around me? I’m not powerful, but He that is in me sure is.
Little children (believers, dear ones), you are of God
and you belong to Him
and have [already] overcome them
[the agents of the antichrist];
because He who is in you is greater
than he (Satan)
who is in the world [of sinful mankind].
– 1 John 4:4
Even in the face of “tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword” — I can be victorious over all that because “in all these things we are more than conquerors and gain an overwhelming victory through Him who loved us [so much that He died for us]” (Romans 8:verse 37).
Even in the face of death… I can be loving. I will not fear, because He is in me.
The reason we can be loving
We can do this. The reason we can be loving to all offenses against us is — because we are filled by His Spirit and we are His chosen. And He loves us.
“God’s own chosen people,
who are holy
sanctified for His purpose]
and well-beloved [by God Himself]”
If this is true of us, we can put on this loving heart, put it on:
“put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience [which has the power to endure whatever injustice or unpleasantness comes, with good temper]; 13 bearing graciously with one another, and willingly forgiving each other if one has a cause for complaint against another; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so should you forgive”
– verses 12-14
Is there really any legitimate irritability – when I have been set apart for this type of love?
I won’t let irritable feelings dominate me. Nope. Don’t let it.
Romans 6:8-14 See verse 12:
12 Therefore do not let sin
reign in your mortal body
so that you obey its lusts
Words and attitude are a choice, and I choose to be nice. Being nice comes from within a soul that is overflowing with love for others. Got that? That kind of Spirit-filled soul? I sure don’t when I’m letting it… letting it reign in me.
Source: Legitimate irritability
Think about it: There is nothing that can take the place of being biblical.
Colossians 3:12-17 Amplified Bible
12 So, as God’s own chosen people, who are holy [set apart, sanctified for His purpose] and well-beloved [by God Himself],
put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience [which has the power to endure whatever injustice or unpleasantness comes, with good temper]; 13 bearing graciously with one another, and willingly forgiving each other if one has a cause for complaint against another;
just as the Lord has forgiven you, so should you forgive.
14 Beyond all these things put on and wrap yourselves in [unselfish] love, which is the perfect bond of unity [for everything is bound together in agreement when each one seeks the best for others].
15 Let the peace of Christ [the inner calm of one who walks daily with Him] be the controlling factor in your hearts [deciding and settling questions that arise]. To this peace indeed you were called as members in one body [of believers]. And be thankful [to God always].
16 Let the [spoken] word of Christ have its home within you [dwelling in your heart and mind—permeating every aspect of your being] as you teach [spiritual things] and admonish and train one another with all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
17 Whatever you do [no matter what it is] in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus [and in dependence on Him], giving thanks to God the Father through Him.