Over the years I’ve often heard preachers say, “I’m preaching more to myself than any of you.” The older I get the more I understand that statement. Often as I’m training or correcting one of children I hear the Lord whisper to my heart… “Listen.”
It is hard sometimes to be patient when a child has done the same offense over and over and over again. I can start to feel like a broken record. (If you are reading this and don’t know what it was like to have a broken record; it was irritating… it was irritating… it was irritating… it was irritating.) Impatience can creep up at any time. Have you ever felt impatient when you had to wait a long time at the doctor’s office? What about those little plastic bags in the produce section that are often difficult to open? Does that drive you crazy? Do you get angry when you’re hungry and the waiter takes too long? What about when you’re trying to write this devotion and four people have already interrupted you? Ha! Ha!
Patience- the capacity for waiting: the ability to endure waiting, delay, or provocation without becoming annoyed or upset; to persevere calmly when faced with difficulties: the suffering of afflictions, or pain, with a calm, unruffled temper; It has a calm temper which bears evils without murmuring, discontent, or disputing. It is the act or quality of waiting long for justice. It is perseverance and constancy in labor or exertion. To be patient is to bear offenses and injuries without anger or revenge.
True patience isn’t just an outward display but an inward assurance and calm that will flow outwardly. Our loving God is truly patient and longsuffering. (Romans 15:5, II Peter 3:9)
The word patience appears in the New Testament 33 times… which points me to Christ himself. He is our perfect picture of patience as he endured great suffering for us.
Romans 5:3 says tribulations worketh patience and James 1:3 says the trying of your faith worketh patience. James 1 sums up the reason for patience in verse 4… “But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”
Oh, to want nothing but Christ alone! Oh, to be free from self! I sometimes get impatient but I long to be the person who always responds with a gentle, kind tone every time I speak. I desire to be as the Proverbs 31:26 woman who… “openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. Oh, may patience have her perfect work in me!