I urge you, then – I who am a prisoner because I serve the Lord: live a life that measures up to the standard God set when he called you. Be always humble, gentle, and patient. Show your love by being tolerant with one another. Do your best to preserve the unity which the Spirit gives by means of the peace that binds you together. (verses 1-3)
Read Ephesians 4:1-16
Have you noticed that in the days before Christmas people often seem to be more tolerant, gentle and patient with each other? People seem to give more generously and show more love and joy than usual. You wonder why we can’t behave like this all the time. It can be done with the daily indwelling of the Holy Spirit, who creates this kind of unity in the hearts of people.
Christ was born to change my sinful heart and give me the joy of salvation. The Spirit, who gives us unity , is able to cause the fruits of the Spirit to be seen in and through me. The Lord gives me opportunities to be humble, gentle, patient, loving and peaceful at home and in the community.
I confess that I’m not able in my own strength to live my life according to God’s word. That’s why I pray to be given strength from above.
O holy child of Bethlehem, descend to us, we pray; cast out our sin, and enter in; be born in us today. (Phillips Brook s, 1835-1893)
by Paul Albers, in ‘Guidance for each Day’ (LCA, Openbook, 2002)
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