Reposted from 2011:
I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Eph 4:1-3
So this is how we are called to walk with our fellow believers: with all lowliness, with humility, not thinking I am so great (wise, mature) and my brother is lower than me. Even the believer who has problems caused by their own bad decisions – we are to walk with them in all lowliness, and gentleness. So if they keep messing up, be gentle with them, not harsh, not abrupt, not dismissive, not prideful, not contemptuous.
This is the way God treats us. He is gentle and lowly in heart! If God treats us with gentleness even in the face of our mess that we make, how much more should we our brothers!
We are called to walk with longsuffering, which is patience. Because sometimes people who have messed up and people who have been lied to all their lives, need a lot of work! Sometimes they keep making the same dumb mistake over and over again. Sometimes I keep making the same dumb mistake over and over again! God is patient with me, and I should likewise be patient with my brothers.
We are called to bear with one another, not writing one another off. Not rejecting. Not judging their hearts. God has not written us off or rejected us, and we have the plank in our eye. Our brothers merely have a speck in theirs.
We walk in humility, patience and forbearance, with love – because we are to stay united with our brothers. We are to live in peace with them. We are not to make mountains out of molehills and create division, but we are to strive after peace.
This does not mean we cast overboard the truth of Scripture for the sake of peace with others. But we don’t have to; we can live the way God calls us to live and still live in peace with others. The problem comes when we try to make others live by all of our convictions. God never called us to do that. God called us to live by His standards, and then let our way of life be a witness to those who aren’t there.
In other words, I have enough to worry about with me to last me the rest of my days. I have no business worrying about you! It is extremely hard to mind one’s own business with all lowliness and gentleness – hard on the flesh, anyway. But there you have it, that is walking in the way of our Father. 🙂
Continued in: Ephesians 4:4-12, gifts for growth