Scripture: verses 2 and 3
Always be humble, gentle, and patient, bearing with one another in love, and making every effort to preserve the unity the Spirit gives through the binding power of shalom (peace).
Observation: The Spirit of God binds us together. He brings peace, wholeness, unity, and harmony. Our job is to not screw it up.
We do this by being humble (by having a clear understanding of who we are and what we deserve – which apart from God, is no one and nothing), by being gentle (by moderating our behavior and our reactions to what is beneficial for the community) and by being patient (by choosing not to be angry or demanding, but instead of wait and let God work.) This…is not particularly fun. At least not always.
I’m especially not good at gentleness. I don’t know if I’ve gotten worse over the years, but there’s been a couple times recently where my sisters have deliberately cut me off to substitute their own gentler interpretation of the topic at hand. I suspect I’ve just gotten more outspoken, but that’s irrelevant.
On the other hand, the mutual support and fellowship among people who put up with each other out of love is pretty awesome. I’m glad that God gives us unity in the first place.
Application: Be gentle, just like I tell Beauty when she decides to snuggle Kitten. Don’t do things that upset her, as I tell her when she squishes Kitten.
Prayer: Yeshua, help me to love others properly. Help me to see things gently. Amen.