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An Honest Account of Love, Grief and Walking With God
Finding God's Goodness in Life's Disappointments

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

What Are You Wearing and Happy July 4th!

Happy July 4th! Celebrate Freedom!

Are You Wearing the Right Thing?
Kathleen Maxwell
June 22nd, 2012
Kerrville Daily Times
    A good friend and I were talking the other day and she asked,  “Kathleen, what are you going to wear? “  We were talking about a function we planned to attend together soon, and were working out the major details when that seemingly common question popped up. “I don’t know,” I replied, “I haven’t planned that far ahead.”  Women always ask other women that question  and I feel it is because we don’t want to wear something that is appropriate.
      Personally, I am not someone that plans far ahead. I might think about what I am going to wear for the day as I am fixing my hair and walking to my closet. 
  The day after I was asked the question, I came across a scripture that made me think about that question again. The scripture was, Colossians 3:12, which states, “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 whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them together in perfect unity.” (NIV)  I love the fact that God thinks of everything. In his wisdom, he even instructs us about what to wear! 
     Scripture shows us that these virtues will always make us look good. Compassion, which is concern for the suffering or misfortune of others, is vital for each of us. How good are you at showing compassion to others, even those you don’t agree with? I recently had someone contact me that had lost someone they loved. There were choices in this person’s life I couldn’t agree with, but my heart went out to this individual because his heart was broken. I had a perfect opportunity to take time and show him the love of God and express concern for his suffering. I wanted to be a safe place for this young adult to express his grief. I know my own personal suffering has developed a greater compassion within me and I am much quicker to wear compassion these days.
     Kindness is the quality of being friendly, generous or considerate. Did you realize when you smile, you are being kind to others? Be sure and wear your smile today and watch how it affects those around you. Smiling can actually make you look younger, so if you are middle aged, it is a must wear garment. Being generous is giving more of something than is expected or necessary. Being kind and considerate is being careful not to cause inconvenience or hurt to another. I am personally going to make sure I wear this more often as I realize I sometimes forget.
     Humility is a modest view of ones own importance. Everyone looks good when they wear this character trait. Pride is a common thief that works hard to steal our humility. There is nothing wrong with a feeling of satisfaction with an accomplishment. That isn’t pride. It is an accomplishment to earn a degree, win a race, or get a promotion. Wearing humility, enables us to honor others making them feel just as valued and important even above our own accomplishment. All that we have and all that we are is because of God’s grace in our lives. Yes, our choices make a difference but for those that call on God, we must remember that it is Him that enables us. Remembering that fact helps keep me in my place. Sometimes I forget that fact and self righteousness or  pride can strip me of the garment of humility. Scripture says to humble ourselves and God will lift us up. It is up to us to put on the garment of humility.
      Gentleness is a definite fashion statement and looks good even on men. A gentle spirit disarms people. Last year, I spoke at an Annual Women’s Meeting on the subject of gentleness. Since then, I am quicker to pick that dress out more. It has saved me when I have really been tempted to give someone a peace of my mind. Gentleness is not weakness but power under control. We are actually more powerful and accomplish much more when we sensitive and kind. Jesus said, “I am gentle,” therefore, we all need to be more like him.
     Wearing patience means we are able to wait without becoming annoyed; slow to loose ones temper with irritating people. I think our patience needs to be like our jeans...pretty durable.  If we don’t get fresh patience, like fresh socks or underwear each day, we will not only smell bad around others but will actually gag ourselves with tension and anxiety. I speak from experience on this issue. I’ve heard people say not to pray for patience but I actually think we need to pray daily for a fresh supply  or we are the ones that suffer most.
     Forgiveness is like shoes. There are just somethings you have to wear to get thru the day and this is one of them. Otherwise, like patience, we are the ones that suffer. A forgiving heart is a tender heart and is the foundation for getting around well and successfully in life. There is much that can be said on this subject but forgiving others is something we do for ourselves. A person dressed in bitterness is easy to spot by the harsh words that come out of their mouth or scowl on their face. Unforgiveness is like wearing a toxic or sour garment...not good for anyone around.
     Last but not least we are admonished to always wear love. When we put love on, it ties everything together. When we do not clothe ourselves in love, it is like wearing clothes that don’t match or clash. When we wear love, we stand out in a crowd. We are dressed for success all day when we sport love. I want to be known for how well I love others. It is not on my bucket list of things to wear, it is on my must have everyday list. I’ve discovered in my own personal life, love is easier to wear when I spend more time tapping into God’s presence and spending time with Him and getting to know his nature.    

     I know there have been times I have tried on something and it just doesn’t look good on me. The color is wrong, the style is just not me, or the way it is designed or cut makes me look heavier or simply isn’t flattering on me. Why on earth would anyone want to wear something that doesn’t look good? ,I am so glad God shows us how to always be in style and looking our best. He is good and thinks of everything and is always there to help us look good when we choose what he says to wear. How are you dressed today? Will you join me make sure you are dressed right? The choice is yours and mine.

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