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Bear with Me

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Sometimes bearing with one another means we have to “put up with” them. It isn’t always the pleasant part of being a Christian, but it's what we're called to do.

"Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you." Colossians 3:13, NIV

Considering the word “bear” this week, we need to look at it in its original meaning. I am told that the phrase “bear with each other,” as it appears in today’s verse, actually means “to put up with”. Sometimes bearing with one another means we have to “put up with” them. Bearing isn’t always the pleasant part of being a Christian.

We all know people who are fun to be with. These are the people with whom we typically choose to spend the bulk of our time. Why not? We enjoy their company, don’t we?

Then there are those less loveable people. Let’s be honest. There is someone in all of our lives who just doesn’t make it easy to love them. They have hurt our feelings in the past, or worse, they have done real damage to us. They have wronged us in some tangible way. Maybe they are from our past. We have tried to forget them, but they keep coming back into our lives. Perhaps, they are simply hard to be around. Quite frankly, if the truth is told, they just get on your nerves! As a Christian, we may be called to “bear with” them, even when it isn’t comfortable.

Please don’t misunderstand. I don’t think the Bible teaches us that we have to permit physical or even emotional abuse. We need to hold others accountable for their actions and just because we are Christians doesn’t give others the right to “walk all over” us. But, as Christians, we are called to higher standards. We can’t just say we don’t like someone. We can’t just dismiss people because their personality doesn’t match ours.

And, we have to be willing to give second chances. We must consider how many chances God has given us and be willing to forgive, just as He has forgiven us.

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