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22 Mon
Love and Peace
[ Colossians 3:12 - 3:17 ]
12. Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
13. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
14. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
15. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
16. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.
17. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Love Conquers (3:12–14)
As Gods chosen people, we should love one another and those around us. How Christians treat one another can be either a strong witness or a strong deterrent to unbelievers. It is hypocritical and actually impossible to witness to others when we as the Church are divided, destructive, rude, unkind, unforgiving, bitter, racist, or mean-spirited toward each other. No one wants to be a part of that kind of community. We might cover it up with Christian language and make up excuses, but the bottom line is that love conquers. Authentic, selfless love is what convinces people that we are not in this religious thing for ourselves, but that there is a higher calling and greater purpose.

The Peace of Christ (3:15–17)
2014 has been a tumultuous and chaotic year in terms of global events, and perhaps it has been the same for your family. Peace may be the last word that comes to mind to describe the past year. We can certainly experience moments of peace in our lives, but true, lasting peace is elusive and impossible without Christ. The peace of Christ does not depend on our circumstances but rather on our relationship with Christ. If we are growing daily in this relationship, we can have peace even in the most turbulent of lifes storms. This is why the message of Christ must dwell within us. It is our one true hope in this world. May the peace of Christ reign in your heart this Christmas season.

- Christians are often quick to help a stranger in need. Consider, however, how you have treated your family and friends. Forget who started what—perhaps this Christmas can be a time for forgiveness and reconciliation.

- Are you always busy, tired, or angry? What can you do to gain Christs peace? It may be time to cut some things out so you can make intentional time and space for Christ in your life.

A Letter to
God, it has been a hard year. Grant Your peace to the body of believers all over the world. Give us Your peace so we can continue to be a light in these harrowing times. Fortify our souls and strengthen our hearts. In Your name. Amen.
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