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Clothed With Christ

We tend to put a lot of thought and money into making sure we are clothed in a specific way. But do we put the same amount of effort in making sure we are clothed with Christ?

I’ve never been much of a fashionista. I’ve never cared about name brand clothes or the newest styles. I’ve always had my own idea of what “style” meant. Unfortunately, my ideas were definitely not always in style.

As a child, I remember a particular outfit that was my absolute favorite. I invented this so-called “style” myself. And it was terrible. To this day, I have not seen anyone wear my creation! I would wear three shirts: a long sleeve shirt underneath, a short sleeve shirt on top of that, and a tank top on top of my short sleeve shirt. I don’t know why I loved this three-layered outfit as much as I did, but I would wear it as. often. as. possible.

The clothes we wear tell the world a lot about us: what characters we like, what team we root for, where we go to school, what bands we like, and what we think makes us look super fly. What we put on ultimately reveals who or what we want to affiliate ourselves with, whether it be the Webb City Cardinals, the Kansas City Chiefs, Captain America, Darth Vader, The Beatles, or Team USA. Colossians 3:12-14 says, “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you must also forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.”

We tend to put a lot of thought and money into making sure we are clothed in a specific way. But do we put the same amount of effort in making sure we are clothed with Christ? Do we really care that He is the one with whom we want to affiliate, the one in whom we find our identity? Do we study God’s Word to learn His ways? Do we look at those ahead of us and allow them to guide and lead us? Do we use our gifts to invite others into His family?

Colossians 3:1-17 tells us that when follow Christ, we put on a “new self.” We no longer find our identity in the things of this earth. With Christ, we now find our new “style” solely in Him. This means that when others look at us, they should recognize Christ. Our emotions, words, and deeds should match those of Jesus. It should be as though we are “putting on” clothes that communicate our sole purpose: to follow Jesus.

When my younger sister was a small toddler, she hated the constraining feeling of wearing clothes. On one occasion (which mortifies my mother to this day) she escaped the confines of our house wearing nothing but her birthday suit! By the time anyone noticed her absence, she had sprinted halfway up the street to the bewilderment of our neighbors (they haven’t made eye-contact with us since then). As amusing as it was at the time, it would not have been funny at all had my sister been 23 (not 3). Yet that is how many of act when we try to live a Christian life without first clothing ourselves with Christ. When we make the decision to follow Jesus, we must be all in. Refusing to dress ourselves fully with Christ leaves us exposed to the dangers of the world.

As you get dressed each morning this week, imagine that you are also putting on your new self. As you finish tying your shoes, remember to clothe yourself with compassion, kindness, humility, and patience. Strive to put on Jesus in all that you do. He is the one who will never go out of style.

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