In verse 11, Paul is helping us understand what our faith should look like practically. The first way he helps us understand that is by telling us to "put on the new self". The phrase used here was commonly used for changing one's clothes. So in the same way that you get up in the morning and change out of what you sleep in and put on what you wear for the day, you are supposed to leave behind your old identity and put on your new identity. This isn't just a one time thing either. I need to remind myself quite frequently who I am because who I am directly effects the way I live my life. You are not who you once were, you have been made new. Paul says that a step in "putting on the new self" is by letting knowledge of God renew you. That's a pretty broad statement huh? Think about all the different things you can do to learn more about God. You can go to Freshley on Monday, church on Sunday, listen to a podcast, or sit down and go through a book of the Bible on your own. One of the greatest things of the time that we live in is the access we have to different sources of knowledge and wisdom. Is there something you want to learn about God? Is there a certain topic that might confuse you? You have so many resources to help you gain knowledge of God.
Verse 12 goes on to tell us that because we are followers of Jesus, there should be a unity between people, especially people that you wouldn't expect there to be unity between. The Gospel goes across race, economic standing, social standing, political views, and any other thing you can think of that divides us. We are called to be peacemakers and peacekeepers in all scenarios. How does this apply to you? Simply put, get to know people that are different than you. Get to know people on your hall, or in your classes that are different races, or cultures. Surround yourself with people other than those that look just like you (those that look like you from an outward appearance, but also an inward appearance).
Lastly, Paul reminds us that "Christ is all, and in all". That sounds super smart and eloquent but is actually pretty easy to apply to our lives. Do you ever wonder where God is in your everyday life? Especially in the mundane things you do all the time like walk to class, get ready in the morning, eat a meal, or study? Paul would say that God is in all of those things. He would say that there is no getting away from Jesus, so what does that mean for you? That means that the only thing keeping you away from experiencing Jesus in those things that you consider to be ordinary parts of your day is an awareness of Him. What if you talked to God about what he wants to do on campus as you walked to class, and then prayed for it? What if you introduced yourself to the person you sit beside in class? Those are just two examples, but the point is, God wants into every part of your life. He doesn't want to talk to you only on Mondays and Sundays. He wants to talk to you all week. God can move powerfully in what we consider to be very ordinary parts of our lives. It's only a matter of us letting him.
To end, you can pray this:
"Jesus, thank you for your love for me. Thank you that you want into every part of my life. Give me a greater awareness of you in the ordinary, mundane parts of my day. Help me to be a peacemaker and step out in faith when it comes to building relationships with people who are different than me. Come and do whatever you want to do in my life. Amen"