Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Colossians 3:12 (NLT)
I won’t mention any names, but the word ‘mercy’, reminds me of an unpleasant childhood game in which someone painfully twists another’s arm until they beg for mercy by saying ‘uncle’. Did you play that game? Were you the uncle or the victim?
Mercy is granted by the one who has power to harm you. This is slightly different from grace, or undeserved love, which anyone can offer. Mercy is given from a position of power.
Because God chose us and loves us, we’re told to clothe ourselves with not just mercy, but tenderhearted mercy. It’s more than a free pass. It’s a pass with good wishes. So when we’d like to twist someone’s arm, instead of just begrudgingly letting go, we must tenderly rub their arm.
I love that we’re told to clothe ourselves with these qualities. Just as we select our shirt, pants, socks, and shoes every
day, we must also choose to wear mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. They create a beautifully coordinated outfit that clashes with anger, bitterness, jealousy, spite, and pride.
Will you please read the short verse again?
Did you notice the word ‘must’?
This isn’t an option. It’s a required uniform.
Are you wearing mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience?