Just a lovely bit of God’s Word for your reading pleasure this evening:
So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more.
You, however, did not come to know Christ that way. Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.
Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen,. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, which whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiven each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Ephesians 4: 17-32
How easy it would be to just succumb, to give in and be like everyone else around me in speech, in dress, in attitude! How strange I must look to the world as they watch and hear and spend time with me! Make me stranger and stranger to those in the world. Give me an air of “different” as I move among them – serving them, helping them, speaking grace to them. May I so long to live according to the Word that I cannot get by for even one day without it. May I hunger and thirst for it like food, water, and well-earned rest. May my very life be a fragrant offering to the King.