It's a crisp day in North Carolina. Fall has fallen! No more in between! Leaves are already crimson in color, orange and flaky and fun! I tackled my unrelenting scarf collection the other day ... it was work! And now, I'm writing for all of you, impatiently waiting for my coffee to brew. Yes, I said it ... impatiently.
The coffee seems to be taking to long and if I'm honest, a lot of things in my life seem to be taking too long now a days. I've been writing about patience for the month of October, and wouldn't you know it this topic has been right on time for me. I hope for you, as well. We all need to exercise our patient muscles, consistently, because that's the heart of Christ. So, right now, as my mind is filling up with amazing scriptures and key notes to encourage you all with, my coffee maker is still not finished and my tensions are quite high. So here we go. This article is for me more than for you!
Patience with People and God
I have no idea which is more difficult—extending patience with God or other humans. Both are challenging and stressful because the outcome is so unpredictable. When will God move? I don't know. When will she get it together? I don't know that, either.
None of us have perfected the heart ... I mean, art, of being patient with each other or with the Lord. If we're honest, we even feel impatient with ourselves in our own humanity. It's natural, though, because we aren't in control. We can't make people produce the outcomes we want. We can't make our loved ones understand our hearts all the time. We can't make people consider us. We can't change people's perspectives. Sometimes, we can't even change ourselves and we certainly can't change, push or move God. So impatience is natural, but it isn't spiritual and honestly, it's a hindrance to our own blessings. If we are impatient, we are stressed, unsatisfied, discontented and critical. None of which produces the love of God, the heart of Jesus or the opportunity to be a witness for the Lord. So what do we do? Where do we go?
Scripture, of course!
"Love is patient ... " -1 Corinthians 13:4
Having patience shows that you are loving. It shows that you are caring for the other person, not just interested in your own self interests. When we practice patience, we practice love for people and love for God.
"But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently" -Romans 8:25
Having patience is a product of hope. We know there are better days ahead for us, because God promises a beautiful future in Jesus (Jeremiah 29:11). So when we believe in God and in His word, this springs up hope and hope will help us develop patience as we wait on God's timing.
"Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience." -Colossians 3:12
Having patience is holy. Because we are loved by God, through Jesus, we have been called to His holiness and have been equipped to be holy people through His Holy Spirit. So when we exercise patience, we are allowing His Spirit to transform us into His image.
So what does it mean to be patient with people and with God? According to the scriptures we just read over, it means to love, to hope and to be holy.
Patience with people can sure be difficult. Waiting your turn in line or in life certainly demands patience. Waiting to graduate college, waiting to be married, waiting to conceive waiting for job promotions, all require an extraordinary amount of patience. It's uncomfortable, but so necessary in order to be gracious, show grace and give it, freely, just as God has given to us.
In every Christian's life there comes a time when even God seems slow to move. Sometimes we have to wait for an answer to prayer, such as finding a job. Other times we must wait for Him to manifest the deep desires of our hearts, like finding a spouse or conceiving a child. At other times we wait for God to speak to our hearts, to comfort us during a trial, or to give us assurance regarding a situation we need to make a decision on. In these cases, we must be patient with God and it's just as uncomfortable with having patience with people and He knows this. Thank goodness He is not impatient with us! Through His scripture and through His love, He wants to gently teach us how to be patient in all things so that He can continue to produce His goodness within us for His glory and His kingdom. That's what all of this is about!
Encouragement for Our Impatience
It isn't easy and we can't do it on our own, not long term, anyway. Eventually, in our own strength, we will snap. We will yell, or say something we shouldn't or react in hurtful ways if we continue down the path of impatience or if we try to extend grace out of obligation. That's not true patience. That's not Spirit led. In stead, as we read and pray and give our concerns to the Lord, knowing that He is in control and not us, we will see patience begin to produce in our hearts through His holiness, His hope and His love.
So as I am completing this article, I think the drip of my coffee has ended and I feel relieved. But I know there are a few people in my life that I need to give grace towards and practice love, hope and holiness towards ... in a nutshell, that's what patience is and I know I must also be patient with God as He deals with their hearts in His timing and not based on my discomfort regarding their behavior towards me. It's a struggle, but I can do it and so can you!
Patience is beautiful honey and it's always in season! So I encourage you that you are capable, equipped and called to show patience to all through love, hope and holiness. Yes, you can and you will because Jesus is transforming our hearts to be more like His!
I look forward to hearing more of your stories throughout this season and into the next. I'll be back in January with more encouragement and I hope you all enjoy the upcoming seasons with family and friends and with the Lord. He has done great things for us and it's just a matter of time before His next great move!
Image taken by Ben Coleman www.TheRevereBlog.com
So I'm going on a little break from blogging for the remainder of the year, but you can still keep up with me! Sign up for my news letter here and get monthly updates! I'll be sharing on Giving Thanks and Christmas Blessings with recipes and family pictures and my upcoming new Podcast. Don't miss out! Also, you SHOULD be following me on IG so do so here! See you soon and blessings!!! xoxo