Being Patient Now
December 9, 2011
Part of it is the culture in which we live; part of it comes from being human, but I really like to get what I want pretty immediately. When I know something is coming in the mail, I check for it every single day. If the thing was sent early in the day and the mail comes later that day I will go out to see if it has come yet.
I really like to get what I want as soon as I can get it.
There are those who must have the next big thing as soon as it comes out. Those things that are being desired may not even be all that bad, but when we treat others poorly or all we can think about is getting that thing now, it reflects badly on us.
Patience is hard to master in a desire centered world. We are told every single day that we can have whatever we want. Over and over we are told that we are entitled to anything right now. The problem is (and really it’s not a problem) that sometime in life we must wait.
“Patience is a virtue.” How many times have you heard that line? I remember hearing it quite a bit growing up. And you know what? I hated hearing it! I kept thinking “Okay! I get it. But come on, nobody likes to wait!”
I’m finding that as I go through the list found in Galatians 5, these are qualities of God. As I type this I kept thinking about how difficult it is to be patient. It is not always helpful to hear that we need to be patient or that God is working through this waiting period. “We will come out a stronger or better person.”
That may very well be true, but it certainly doesn’t make the actual waiting process any easier. But then when I thought about the ways that God is patient, it really opened up some new thoughts. I am so glad that God has been patient with me. There have been times in my life when I have run from His will. Following after God whole heartily scared me so much that I thought I just might be better off doing things my own way just this once.
And God waited.
There have been times in my life when I have given into sin. Over and over I would commit acts of defiance against our most holy and wonderful God.
And God waited.
As Jesus hung on the cross dying, He called out to His Father. God could have stepped in and saved Jesus from that terrible death. He could have prevented the whole thing from happening.
But God waited.
He knew that the outcome of what was happening with Jesus was worth the temporary suffering. He knew that after Jesus died and had been buried, He would raise from the dead just a few short days later. God knew that as a result, we would be able to call on the name of Jesus and have a part of the salvation that He freely offers.
Sometimes we forget that God can see the big picture. God knows the pain we are experiencing, but He also understands the importance of patience.
I don’t think it is too much for Him to ask of me to be patient with those around me or with the situations I face. He has done it for me, and now I turn around and do it for others.
What reminds you to be patient even when it is difficult? Does remembering God’s patience with you help?