Two months after my high school graduation, I started working in a steel mill’s open-hearth department near my hometown, Youngstown, Ohio. I continued to work full time for nearly nine years until I earned my undergraduate degree. I had many different jobs during my time there, and some of the jobs required me to either get really dirty or be around a lot of heat causing me to perspire quite a bit.
Thus, I normally had to take off the work clothes and shower before putting on my street clothes. It was a wonderful feeling to remove the dirty and smelly work clothes after my shift was over. After the shower and putting on the clean clothes I felt almost like a new person.
In this passage from Colossians we have the image of being stripped of the old self (old clothes) and being renewed into a new self (new clothes). The reader is encouraged to leave behind the old practices that they were once involved in, and to be renewed with the knowledge of a new life in Christ.
As we take part in the spiritual pilgrimage, the practices of the old self (old clothes) maybe something, we don’t feel like wearing any longer. Somewhat like when I couldn’t wait to get my dirty clothes off after my shift was over. While striving to become a lifelong disciple of Jesus Christ, may you leave behind those old things that prevent you from being renewed. May you be clothed with your new self (new clothes) in the image of Christ! Peace, Vernon T.
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