Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. -Colossians 3:12

You never know how complex the lives are of the very people you walk past every day…in public, in church, at work, and at school.

People are in pain. They’re misunderstood, dismissed, written off…sometimes by themselves. They are at this point in their lives after years and years of untold stories: joy, regret, celebration, sorrow, betrayal, and heartache.

These are the same smiling and strong people you see, in just as much pain as those who show it plainly. Yes, even the man/woman who barks at you and snaps for no apparent reason.

As believers and agents of light, we are one of these people in the crowd. But in us, as with some of them, is the flame of the Holy Spirit, which reminds us to keep our eyes fixed on the Lord as we walk through this very dark world. When we do that, and give Him our burdens of pain and sin and remorse through prayer, we shrug off the weight of the world, and His light shines brightly by us reflecting it to those around us. He is glorified and made known.

This is a great privilege to be His adopted child, and also our amazing mission to light up the world.

We all have long storylines with ups and downs in them, but God wants us to focus ahead, on Him, not look back on the pains of the past. He wants us to walk a new storyline, one that’s straight and narrow, but bright and more rewarding than any other.

Before you head out into the mission field, don your spiritual armor, piece by piece. Then, clothe yourself with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Give God your burdens and carry the spark of His light to warm others in the cold and darkness.

The amazing husband and wife team from Australia, known as Pocket Fuel, wrote a great devotional on this very topic. Here’s an excerpt:

Our ‘position’ as Christians should never cause us to think we are elevated above anyone else, but rather it awakens within us the ability to come underneath to support, help and shoulder the burden of others… bring hope in heartache, peace in fear, family in loneliness, and ultimately the life giving power of God to a hungry and thirsty world.

Read the whole devotional »

Today’s soundtrack

Brandon Heath’s “Give Me Your Eyes” asks God to help us see everyone’s struggles through his lens of love, compassion, and kindness.