Bear with Each Other
EVERYONE has WEAKNESSES
God tells us several different times to accept one another. According to Paul in Ephesians 4:2, what exactly does it mean to “bear with one another in love” and why should we gently cover over shortcomings?
- Tolerate people’s weaknesses for the sake of unity.
BEARING with ONE ANOTHER
What are the keys to tolerating other people? We see four principles in this passage which help us “bear with one another” in a godly manner.
- Humbly take an honest inventory of your weaknesses.
- Patiently restraint yourself from being critical.
- Strength comes from being unified towards the mission.
- Remember the grace given to you.
Study and Discussion Questions
1. How tolerant of others’ weaknesses are you? Do you find yourself picking apart the shortcomings of others around you? Why are we harder on some people more than others. Or, maybe you are an easygoing person, but there is one or two people in your life that are “unlovable.”
2. Read Proverbs 15:18 and Ecclesiastes 7:8. Why does patience calm a quarrel? Would others describe you as a hot-tempered person? How patient are you with others’ weaknesses? Why does Solomon see pride as the opposite of patience?
3. Read Philippians 2:3-11. This passage is a description of the humility of Jesus Christ. As you study each verse, ask yourself what characteristics of humility were present in Jesus and if they are present within your life.
Applying the Word to Life
4. Humility grows within us when we take an honest look at ourselves. Take personal inventory of yourself and ask: “What do I do (or not do) that irritates my spouse, children, employees, friends?” You might need to ask them (if you trust that they have your best interest in mind) in order for you to see your blind spots because many times, we have weaknesses because we do not see them in ourselves.
5. Do you know your mission in life? When you are focused on your mission, you don’t focus on picking apart others. What are you focused on in life: your mission or other people’s shortcomings?
6. If you have someone who is “unlovable” in your life, will you commit to focus on their positive characteristics this week?