And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.

Even though life does not often “deal us the hand” that we would prefer to be dealt to us, we always have much for which to be thankful. Our God is the God who gives to his people good things. Sometimes those good things are obvious to us. At other times, God’s good gifts are things that require us to focus intently in order that we might recognize his presence and his action in our lives. When all is said and done, we serve a great and holy God who desires in every way to take care of us, and to give to us everything that we need—especially that which helps us to be close to him.

It is in the context of presenting one of his famous “lists” that the apostle Paul encourages the Colossian church to be people whose hearts are filled with the peace of Christ. This “filling” of the heart is manifested in kindness and humility, as well as in compassion and meekness. In addition, we find ourselves living in the peace of Christ when we are forgiving and when we are patient. Over all of this, Paul says, we act in love. Love is the crucial element that “binds everything together in perfect harmony.” And love is the great gift from our God, the one who loves us perfectly and completely.

May we all be so convicted by the love that God has for us that we not only give thanks to him for his gracious gifts, but that we also live lives of love toward everyone with whom we come into contact.


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