Our character is who we are – it is how we perceive ourselves, how others perceive us, how we deal with situations, how we live our lives and even what goes on in our minds. In reality, our character is who we are when nobody sees us but God.
[ “Our character is who we are when nobody sees us but God.” ]
The Lord has instructed us to build good character from the inside out. This must be a transformation, not just a temporary face we put on when others are watching. God desires a change of heart and mind, which means we should direct our thoughts toward humility, love and forgiveness rather than pride, annoyance or holding grudges.
Colossians 3:12-15 explains what the Lord desires of our character: “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. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.”
For those of us going through suffering, building our character might easily be pushed to the back burner. It may seem too difficult to focus on developing ourselves positively in the name of the Lord. What then?
Never forget that it is through your character that you will find hope. “… We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us,” (Romans 5:3-5).
Focus on this prayer to become transformed from the inside out, building a character God will rejoice in: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me,” (Psalm 51:10).
Written by Kelly Reed. Kelly is a senior Strategic Communications major with a focus in Public Relations. She is the President of IWU PRSSA and hopes to work as a communications director of a nonprofit organization after graduation. She loves to tell people’s stories through written word, artwork, speech and strategy. Visit Kelly’s personal website and blog at www.kellyreed.weebly.com.