Bearing With Each Other

Bearing With Each Other by Kirk Hunt

Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.

Colossians 3:12-13 NKJV

Bearing with people is not easy. Folk can be so wrong, so annoying, and so in need of a slap in the head. Instead, we are commanded to treat the worst of them with forbearance which consists of patience, courtesy and dignity. This is so important that the apostle does not frame it as a request.

Keep in mind that folk, at their best, rarely change in a moment. Even when they want to badly. During the transition, they need friends, family and saints to stay with them as they do the work and follow the process.

So, with the rebels or lawbreakers disarmed and at your feet, you are commanded. Show them your best patience. Give them your sincerest courtesies. Blanket them with your richest dignity. Prove that you are one of God’s selected saints.

Somewhere in there, you will need to forgive them. For yourself, not for them. Forgiveness makes your work with and towards them lighter and easier.

Follow the forbearance commandment whether they ask for forgiveness, or not. Because you are commanded to love and forgive others as Christ forgave and loves you. And when you find yourself receiving patience, courtesy and dignity, do the math.

Think: Forbearance is a commandment to God’s people.

Pray: “Lord, help me to be forbearant with everyone, especially other saints.”

Copyright © November 2020, Kirk Hunt

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.

Spirit of Forbearance

Spirit of Forbearance By Kirk Hunt

And do you think this, O man, you who judge those practicing such things, and doing the same, that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?

Romans 2:3–4 NKJV

 

Forbearance can be defined as the act of restraining an action, despite right or privilege. The bank can choose not to start foreclosure. The officer can choose not to write a speeding ticket. They choose to restrain their right and capacity to act. Jesus and the adulterous woman (John 7:53-8:11) is a prime example of the spirit of forbearance.

 

Jesus, sinless, pure and perfect, could cast the first store. The Law said He ought to cast the first stone. Instead, He refused to condemn her.

 

Jesus was more concerned about her soul than the opinion of the Pharisees. He had the power to act and the power to restrain Himself. Graciously, He instructed her to give up sin then sent her back to her life.

 

Jesus held the right, the privilege and capacity to condemn her. By restraining His action, the woman received an opportunity for repentance and restoration. Jesus’ forbearance was a strong act of mercy, grace and outreach.

 

The spirit of forbearance is a sister of gentleness. Forbearance and gentleness only matter where there is the ability to act. Both require you to consider the impact on others, before yourself. Do you choose to act against others at every opportunity? Can you restrain yourself, sometimes?

 

Think: Forbearance is the power to restrain yourself. Can you?

 

Pray: “Lord, help me to restrain myself in order to benefit others.”

 

Copyright © October 2016, Kirk Hunt

 

This devotional is brought to you courtesy of CadreMen Press. You can purchase a copy of Blessed and Blessing: Devotionals For Gospel Champions from your favorite bookseller or directly from CadreMen Press.