Scripture: Colossians 1: 9-14
Key verse: (9) “For this reason, since the day we heard it, we have not ceased praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of God’s will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding.”
Reflection: Everyone likes encouragement. It feels good. It can give lift our spirits and give us hope. It can inspire us to try new things or try harder and not give up. Not many of us write letters anymore but we still share words of encouragement with one another. It may be a text, a tweet, or a picture. The Apostle Paul wrote to the church in Colossae to remind them of the centrality, sufficiency and supremacy of Jesus Christ. He warned them about legalism and turned their focus to grace and to the knowledge that no matter who they were, transformation was possible. Paul called them to live lives worthy of their calling, lives that were pleasing to the Lord. He prayed that they would have the strength from God that they needed to be patient, joyful and thankful. This letter reminds us that we, too, are called to live this kind of life. When the gifts of God are cultivated in our lives, through the power of the Holy Spirit and reinforced by our actions, we show we belong to God. I invite you to reflect on Paul’s words today as if Paul were writing directly to you. Then ask yourself: Am I living a life worthy of my calling? Is God cultivating strength and patience in my life? Do I give thanks that I belong to God as a beloved child? What is getting in the way? Speak words of encouragement to yourself remembering that God doesn’t seek perfection. Speak words of encouragement to someone else remembering that you can be an instrument of God’s grace and love. Finally, be thankful – for something or someone.
Prayer: Loving God, we thank you for your saving grace. Help us follow you, relying on your power and strength. Send someone to us today who needs a word of encouragement. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Author: Deborah Conner
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].