Peaceful Hearts and Singing Mouths
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts. . . . Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. Colossians 3:15a, 16
Before Paul gave a list of instructions for Christian households, he told the Colossians how they were to work—no matter what their position in the house. They were serving God in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and so what they did should come from a heart full of peace and gratitude.
Many other emotions tend to rule our hearts, but Paul told the Colossians to let the peace of Christ rule (Colossians 3:15). And they were to sing psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit with gratitude in their hearts (v. 16). When the message of Christ dwelt among them richly whether teaching or admonishing one another “with all wisdom,” the hearer would surely be more willing to receive the word.
For example, most husbands would prefer wives singing in the Spirit rather than nagging about a messy house. And most wives would prefer husbands singing in the Spirit rather than harshly laying down the laws of the house.
In such an attitude of peace and gratitude accompanied by song, Paul told wives to submit to their husbands, “as is fitting in the Lord” (v. 18). And husbands were to love their wives and not to be “harsh with them” (v. 19). Children who obeyed their parents in everything, pleased the Lord (v. 20). Parents were to guard against embittering or discouraging their children (v. 21).
Workers—both in and out of the household—were to obey those over them in everything; “and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to curry their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord” (v. 22). In fact, no matter what we are doing, we are to work at it with all our heart, as working for the Lord (v. 23).
We will be repaid for our work. Wouldn’t it be better to receive the reward of a promised inheritance from the Lord (v. 24) than to be repaid for doing wrong (v. 25)?
Examine your work. Are you, both in word and deed, serving God in the name of Jesus Christ with a heart full of peace and gratitude and a mouth full of song?
What did Jesus say about controlling our hearts in John 14:23-27? How are we being helped in this?
What does Peter say is the value of a gentle and quiet spirit (heart) in 1 Peter 3:1-7?
Read Psalm 110:1-5. How can you apply this psalm to your daily life?
For more on this topic, see the devotion on Mark 7 and the one on Ephesians 6:1-9.
Nancy J. Baker