We are called to be humble, loving, truth-telling Christians in community – living out mutual affection and honor for one another. Like our Savior, our life together should be “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).
“Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other” (Romans 12:10, NLT).
When our Churches are filled with people who treat each other with this kind of honor and with humble foot-washing love, we’ll offer a positive subversion to narratives of life without God.
When we live the gospel by practicing the mind of Christ in community (see: Philippians 2:3-8), we authenticate the message in a way that postmodern culture cannot deconstruct.
What does this community look like?
“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity” (Colossians 3:12-14).
4 Questions for conversation
- How does the description of “God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved” lead to the clothing of “compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience”?
- Are there deeper identity issue for those inappropriately dressed? (chosen, holy and dearly loved)
- What piece of clothing is missing from your wardrobe? (Compassion? Kindness? Humility? Gentleness? or Patience?)
- Does Colossians 3:12-14 describe the clothing of the poor in spirit who inherit the Kingdom of Heaven? (Matthew 5:3)
3 Action points
- Share this with your leadership team and your entire Church.
- Emphasize this attire as necessary to gospel-centered community.
- Study Philippians 2:1-11 in light of this truth (practicing the mind of Christ in community).
“The witness of a single life lived under Christ’s rule is powerful. But the skeptic will discount it. He or she will explain it away as being a mutation: ‘She was born a caring person. That can happen.’ But as kingdom citizens live their lives together, actually loving one another, it becomes a different matter. Such a community – whether it is a family, a few believers in a neighborhood, a network of business people, or a church congregation – makes a persuasive statement to an on-looking world that the kingdom, indeed, is among them. The message of the kingdom is amplified as its citizens live out their unique calling in community. As they do, the kingdom grows.” (The Insider, pp. 33-34)