Yeah, a wise individual or two has informed me that if you pray for patience…
-you’ll invariably find yourself stuck in traffic, get all the way to the car park and realize you left your keys in your other jacket and end up in the grocery store line behind 6 people (shortest line available) where the 3rd person ahead of you didn’t realize their credit card had maxed out or the machine isn’t printing out receipts so the entire que is jammed until solutions are worked out.
Two points: The same stuff happens to total non-believers and they didn’t pray about spiritual growth, haven’t studied Galatians chapter 5 which lists patience as one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit. Secondly, the practical way we become more patient is via experiences just like the above, and often involving those we love most.
Anxiety, fear of what others will think/say when you arrive late for whatever sort of meeting or event, anger because you deserve better, shame because your family and/or friends and/or co-workers deserve better from you, on it goes.
Patience with yourself? That’s one of my issues. I can pretty well give grace, forgive, blow off most anything re. others but I can drive myself crazy with frustration in terms of how looooonnnnnggggg it can take me to learn something new, what seems like an eternity to finish this or that project and so on. I want close to immediate results, closure and “Let’s get on to the next thing”. There are too many reasons for this to detail but anything from procrastination, moods, the sheer amount of effort/work/time to “get it done right” and fretting over whether I can finish what I start all pop up in my life from time to time.
Did I mention “time”??
Ever notice there are relationships you are willing to re-visit, to again focus on, to truly invest in while there are also people you’re just not willing to give the same attention and passion to -and therefore you get rather impatient with these “other” folks?
Still- what God the Holy Spirit is clearly working to grow (mature) in Christ followers is among other things, PATIENCE.
Trust me, I’m on the same train… and most of ’em ain’t runnin’ on Swiss time.
I think this is yet another actual reason we don’t love those who don’t think, act or vote like us -we have less and less patience to engage with “those people”.
I am eternally glad our God doesn’t treat us like that.
“And remember, our Lord’s patience gives people time to be saved.” 2 Peter 3.15
Meanwhile is it the fruit of His love or patience for us to consider asking God to “rain down fire on them” because of… errr…
Hmmm. Do we know what Spirit we’re of??
Something to consider I think.
As always, thanks for stopping by! -Glenn