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The Second Greatest Commandment

Create new habits, if you want to be the kind of person that God wants

The Second Greatest Commandment
A Simple Guideline – Part VII

Scripture Reading: 1 Peter 3:8-17 (NLT)

Key Verses: 1 Peter 3:10-11 (NLT) For the Scriptures say, “If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies. Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it.”

Yesterday we ended our study with two guidelines to integrate into our relationships.

Here are the guidelines:

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. (Colossians 3:12-13)

There is nothing difficult about understanding these guidelines, but we all struggle to live them out in our relationships. Oh, what a difference these guidelines make when we practice them, even if we are not perfect doing so.

The third step is to write Colossians 3:12-13 down on a 3×5 card, in your phone, or somewhere else where you can read it daily. This is important if you are struggling in one of your relationships.

We have all learned bad habits for how we treat people, and these bad habits give us trouble. We need to create new habits if we plan to be the kind of people that God wants us to be.

An article I read said it takes 66 days to create a new habit.

Creating a new habit based on Colossians 3:12-13 depends on you reading these verses every day and then trying to live them out in your life. You can go to work practicing and showing another person all that this verse talks about.

A fourth step is to develop the attitude of following these guidelines without expecting a good response. Decide that you want to be this kind of person not matter what others say or do.

Sometimes you get a good response, but even if you do not, this has to be about what you do, not how the other person responds. You cannot control what others do or say, so behaving in response to someone else’s behavior is worldly thinking!

Mimic Jesus in your relationships rather than mimic the people you are in relationship with! Even if you lose arguments or lose something else by offering Christ-like behaviors to others, decide now that you are good with that.

Finally, I have used the word “practice” throughout this study. This means that when we practice something, we also experience failures. Most of us will not master all these guidelines. We must be patient with ourselves and know that if we keep practicing even amidst many failures that we will improve!

Father, I am determined to keep practicing the guidelines in Your Word to help me have healthy relationships. Grant me reminders and strength. In Jesus’s Name I pray, amen.