Friday, February 3, 2023
Instead [of living by your corrupt sinful nature], let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God — truly righteous and holy.
So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body. And "don't sin by letting anger control you." Don't let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil.
We all tend to classify our neighbors into people like to "hang around with" and those we'd prefer to avoid — mere proximity neighbors. Luke made sure we knew to love ALL of our neighbors. He included the story of the good Samaritan as Jesus' definition of loving our neighbors. 
We have the Holy Spirit to empower us past our sinful nature to live righteous and holy lives with those around us.  That means we are called called to love our neighbors and treat act towards them based on two principles:
Paul specifically addressed two sins that so easily can control our lives and ruin our relationships: lying and anger. We must speak the truth in love. We must resolve our differences with others before anger has time to fester. As Paul said it elsewhere: "Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone."  Being at peace means speaking truthfully to our neighbors with "gentleness and respect"  and not letting anger simmer between us.
Sounds like Paul knows where I live and how my attitude needs to change as I deal with ALL of my neighbors! How about you?
Almighty God, thank you for loving me and welcoming me as your child. Forgive me when I lose sight that my attitude and actions toward my neighbors matter to you. I do have neighbors I prefer to avoid. I do have neighbors with whom I have not resolved long-standing conflicts. Bless me and empower me as I try to conform my heart to the ways of the Holy Spirit * as Your presence within me transforms me to be more like Jesus. ^ Amen.
Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.
'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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