“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”
Having just returned from my son’s wedding in Philadelphia… I got to see first hand how much work goes into a joyous day such as his. There is the reception, the vows, the flowers, etc. But there is a special attention given to the bride. It is her big day and teams of people work to get her dress just right, her hair just right, etc. One website I went on recommends that a bride undergo a skin treatment a month before: “It will majorly involve scrubs, face packs, steam, messages, etc.” The bride is also to adopt healthy eating habits and avoid junk, oily and spicy foods.” This is all done so her skin will “radiate exceptional glow and beauty…” “Enough to create a spell on [her] spouse…”
I got to thinking about the passages in the New Testament that compare the church to a bride. Our groom is Jesus. Revelation 19:7 says: Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.”
What kind of things does His church, his bride, need to do by way of preparation? What beauty treatments do we need to undergo? Paul says that as new creatures in Christ we are to put on: compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Compassion is a condition in our heart that causes us to spring into action at the sight of someone in need. Kindness combines the qualities of goodness and graciousness…. a sweetness of disposition. The Humility Christ desires for us is not of the “aw shucks and kicking the dirt” variety, but a real “forgetting of ourselves” for the sake of others. Gentleness is not being soft on people, but being soft in our manner toward them. Patience (Greek makrothhumia, literally “long fuse”) refers to self-restraint when insulted or injured… not resorting to retaliation.
There are many ways one could think of to try to empress our heavenly groom (read our Bible more, go to church more often, memorize more Scripture verses) but are we putting on the robes of righteousness our the groom sent over for us to wear?
I enjoyed the wedding in Philly. Justin’s bride, Lauren, was beautiful. I could see the delight in his eyes.
Are you prepared for the wedding of the Lamb? He longs to delight in you.