After my wife and I moved into our new house back in November of last year, I unpacked all of the clothes we wear on a regular basis and put them away for easy access. The rest of our clothes had been packed into three large wardrobe boxes that I placed in the small walk-in closet in our master bedroom… where they still sit unpacked today! Now that I finished clearing out the guest room, the wardrobe boxes will be the next mountain to conquer!
Like I just said though, there is really no rush as we haven’t worn most of the items in those boxes since we returned home from Oklahoma in 2009! Two of the boxes have Piper’s dresses, dress coats and other fancy items that she can’t wear at this time. The other box contains my sport coats, dress pants and the like that currently see very little use compared to my shorts, T-shirts and jeans!
But I do have vivid pictures of Piper standing at her closet on many a Sunday morning choosing the right dress and just the perfect accessories to complement the dress while accenting her attractive physical features. She has always had a knack for picking the right accessories... even it was just to go with a long sleeve cotton shirt and a pair of jeans! I look forward to enjoying that view again!
The observation of Piper came to mind this morning as I noticed that Paul continued his analogy of “putting on” clothes as an example of “putting on” the attributes of grace described in Colossians chapter three. In verses twelve and thirteen he mentions eight garments of beautiful grace consisting of Tender Mercies, Kindness, Humbleness of Mind, Meekness, Longsuffering, Forbearance, Forgiveness and Love. With that list of garments, I could easily see my wife (or any of us) standing in front of an open closet and choosing items of clothing marked with each of those eight characteristics.
In the master bedroom of the first house we bought back in 1986, there was a vanity/dressing area that consisted of our two large clothes closets and a desk like vanity. The closet doors had floor to ceiling mirrors on them and there was also a large mirror above the vanity. Once again, I always enjoyed sneaking a peek of the finished product when Piper would turn around and catch the 360 degree view of her outfit just before we left for church. Believe me… it was a sweet view that beautifully captured my senses of sight and smell with the lingering fragrance of the wonderful perfume she used to wear! And you know… when we got home, that fragrance was still detectable in the air!
That to me is the affect I believe that Paul was trying to convey to his readers. The garments of grace that we “put on” each day should be appealing to the senses of those we come into contact with each day… and when we leave the room the beautiful fragrance of His grace should linger for a while!
Over the years I have been in the presence of some whose fragrance of fear was NOT enjoyable to be around and I wanted to open the windows and turn on the fans, or change my clothes after we left! But I’ve also had the pleasure of breathing in the sweet, wonderful fragrance of God’s grace in individuals who just want to be vessels of His love and His grace! It is like the times I would be at work and notice that my shirt still retained the fragrance of Piper from the hug she gave me as I walked out the door that morning. I didn’t ever want to wash that shirt!
That’s the type of affect I want to have as I pass by people in the store, at work, at church or in the neighborhood. In fact, we prayed that very thing yesterday for when the Air Conditioning technician came by to work on our A/C unit! What affect or appeal do you emit when you walk the daily course of your life? Do you take the time each morning to put on the garments of God’s grace? Then do you check yourself out in the mirror to make sure everything looks and fits just right? Think about that the next time you sneak a peek of your mug in the store window as you walk by!
Have a great weekend, and as you do, keep asking yourself… “What garments am I expecting to ‘put on’ today?”