Finally, brothers, rejoice. Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.

—2 Corinthians 13:11 ESV

Paul’s closing words to the Corinthians in the letter we call 2nd Corinthians has some great advice. 

“Rejoice.”  Sure beats being a naysayer, a complainer, or an angry man or woman.

“Aim for restoration.”  Also translated “become complete,” or “perfect.”  It suggests doing one’s best to grow up into maturity—not physically, but in terms of character, integrity, and most of all, godliness.

“Comfort one another.”  In a day and age in which it seems like people are more easily offended than ever before, maybe we would do well to think about other people’s comfort more than whining about our own.

“Agree with one another.”  Of course there are ideas that are patently wrong.  We are not being encouraged to embrace falsehood.  Rather, let us discern which things are non-negotiable, remaining strong in them, while being big enough to agree to disagree agreeably on the rest for the sake of the last one on the list…

“Live in peace.”  Isn’t that what we all want?  And need?  So let us live peaceably.

What a great blessing to live in the presence of God.  As we strive to live according to the above list of character traits, we can rest that God is with us.