The Lord brought this verse to my mind this evening. I believe there is an important lesson that He wants me to extract from it.
If I’m reading this passage correctly, then my Christian walk should be characterized by three steps:
- Be kind:
- Be compassionate; and
- Be forgiving, since God has been so quick to extend His abundant mercy and grace to me.
[Repeat steps 1,2, and 3 as needed]
Sometimes, I think we run the risk of over-complicating things that God has made very clear and simple in the Bible. So, the lesson I’m extracting from all of this is that the Lord wants me to continue focusing on kindness and compassion to others, but remembering that – when someone does something to cause me offense or harm – that I should be quick to forgive.
Forgiveness doesn’t mean that the other party is exempt from the consequences of his/her actions, but rather that I keep short accounts with others and leave all else in the Lord’s eminently capable hands.
Dear Lord, thank You for directing me to this passage from Ephesians 4. Help me to remember that Your three-step “recipe for living” is straightforward, but isn’t always easy to apply and live out each day.
Help me to bear in mind that I am able to forgive others because You first forgave (and continue to forgive) me. Prompt me to keep short accounts with others, and instead focus my attention on the things, people and circumstances You’ve placed in front of me, rather than on what is already well behind me. In Your name I pray, Amen.