In our chapel services this week, one of our focuses has been on the way we treat other people and the instruction to love our neighbors as ourselves. During our discussion time, we have explored several bible verses which encourage us in this endeavor. One of my all-time favorite bible verses which provides some detailed instructions on what this will look like in our lives is found in Ephesians 4:31 – 32. Paul writes to the church:
Ephesians 4:31 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32 Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
I love the wisdom and counsel of this verse. I love the fact that it speaks to some behaviors and attitudes which we need to avoid and it also lists some behaviors and attitudes that we should be engaged in on a daily basis. Our Heavenly Father does not want our lives to be characterized and marred with anger, ugly words, and bitterness. Our Heavenly Father desires that our lives be characterized by kindness, forgiveness, and compassion. We are called and commanded to love and forgive others, just as God through Christ has loved and forgiven us. Being kind, tender-hearted, and forgiving is not just a great way to be, it is a great way to declare and demonstrate God’s love to others.