I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Ephesians 4:1-3
Believers are called with a calling we can barely begin to fathom.
This calling includes knowing the height, width, breadth and depth of the love of Jesus and being filled with all the fullness of God. Not only that, but we are being built together into a dwelling place for God himself.
Paul said he was in prison for this incredible calling. And he urged the Ephesians to walk in a manner worthy of it.
How do we walk in a manner worthy of such a high calling? First of all, with all humility. Did you catch that? ALL humility – not some. Not occasional humility, but ALL humility. Complete humility.
This humility will manifest itself with ALL gentleness and patience and bearing with others in love. If we view each other as those who have received the vast love of Christ and the fullness of God, how can we not be humble and gentle with one another?
Here’s how C.S. Lewis put it:
“It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ‘ordinary’ people. You have never talked to a mere mortal….But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploit — immortal horrors or everlasting splendours.” –The Weight of Glory
Our fellow believers are not mere mortals. They are beings vastly loved by Christ and someday his glory will shine through them, so much so that if we didn’t know better we might be tempted to worship them.
That’s why Paul urges us to walk with all humility, gentleness and patience toward one another. This is also why Paul says we should be eager to maintain unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
Not grudgingly, but eager- anxious – earnest – quick – to maintain unity. The spirit creates the unity, but we must maintain it. This means we should bend over backwards, go out of our way, sacrifice, do whatever it takes to maintain the unity of the Spirit.
How about you? Is there anyone you’re offended at? Anyone you should attempt to reconcile with? Anyone you’re not in unity with? Would people describe you as humble, gentle, forbearing, patient and eager to maintain unity of the Spirit?
Let’s all pursue these things today with his mighty help.