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PSALM 150:1-6

LUKE 6:27-38

In today's First Reading just as in yesterday's, Paul uses the word put. In yesterday's First reading Paul wrote: Put to death what is earthly in you- immorality, impunity, passion, evil desire and covetousness, which is idolatry. He also wrote: Put off the old man with his practices and have put on the new man, who is being renewed in knowledge after the image of his creator.

The emphasis here is on the word put.

On a daily basis we engage in activities that involve the word put and we find ourselves either putting on, putting off, putting across, putting away or putting on hold but in our context we will concentrate on putting on just as Paul has emphasized.

When Paul uses the phrase -put on- it means that he wants them to move something from one place or position to another especially by changing their attitude. By using the phrase put on, Paul also wants them to stop engaging in activities that are harmful or unacceptable in their life of faith as God's chosen ones who are also holy and beloved.

What does Paul want the Colossians to put on? He wants them to put on kindness, compassion, lowliness, meekness, patience, forbearing and forgiveness. Paul also wants them to put on love above other virtues because love binds everything in perfect harmony.

To put on literally means to be clothed and on a daily basis we put on clothes which we later change to pave way for new and clean clothes. Without changing the clothes you are putting on now, you won't be able to put on new and clean ones.

Paul is urging us today just as he urged the Colossians those days to wear the virtues he has mentioned every day like a shirt, a jacket or a favourite sweater that we always put on. The image of clothing that Paul uses is not just about specific items of clothing but of essentially and generally being clothed.

Just as we do not walk out of our homes without some basic items of clothing, Paul is calling us not to move around in our daily activities without putting on love, compassion, kindness, lowliness, meekness and patience. We should not practice our faith without wrapping ourselves in the new life and ministry of Christ Why? Because we are God's chosen ones, holy and beloved - Matthew 22:1-14.

Why do you dress the way you dress? What do you consider when putting on a certain cloth?

Normally when you put on clothes you have to consider factors like the weather, your work, occasions, plus many other factors. Sometimes you may put on clothes that do not match the above mentioned criteria and it will be said that your clothes are ill- fitting.

Just as ill-fitting clothes detract from the beauty of a person, so too do ill- fitting behaviors detract from the beautiful image of Christ that believers should exhibit as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved.

There is a popular phrase that goes: My dress is my choice. It means that how you dress is your own business and it affects no one but you will notice that in today's First Reading that how you dress either in vices or in virtues will positively or negatively affect another person and in relation to that, Jesus in today's Gospel reading insists on putting on love for enemies, putting on mercy and not judging others.

Look at the way you are dressed right now. What if your shoes stand for love, your tie for compassion, your trouser for meekness, your belt for peace, your shirt for patience, your blazer for thanksgiving... don't you see you will be well dressed in your faith as God's chosen, holy and beloved and that is the beauty and smartness of faith.


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