Galatians 5:22-23(NLT), “But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. There is no law against these things!”
PATIENCE. One of the things that captures my heart the most about our God, is His enduring patience. I can look at my own life and see how patient He has been with me. Through all my sins, lack of understanding, and struggles to serve Him consistently, He has always been steadfast in His love and patience toward me. He has never given up on me. I know many of you can relate, because you too have experienced the Master’s patience in your lives.
When I saw this picture of the desert, it reminded me of learning to be patient.
In the desert…
•It’s hard to walk on sand (we must rely on the Lord to make our steps firm).
•The temperature fluctuates from extreme highs to extreme lows, (we must rely on the Lord to equip us to handle all kinds of conditions).
•It’s very dry (we must rely on the Lord to refresh us).
Learning patience can feel like a “desert experience”, but we must trust God to make our steps firm, equip us with all we need, and refresh us when we are weary. When we are in a “dry place”, and we feel “thirsty” for the things we desire, and God tells us to wait, it can be very hard. We may even wonder if it’s worth the wait, and we may feel like giving up, but we shouldn’t. We shouldn’t give up, because our waiting is part of God’s plan to bring about great things. Not only in our lives, but in the lives of other people.
Waiting develops our character. It prepares us to handle the blessings God wants to give us. Today many people no longer want to wait for anything. Therefore, people are taking possession of things they are not prepared to handle, which often leads to stress and failure. We can’t let fear keep us from trusting God as we wait. God knows what we are developed enough to handle.
It’s important to remember that every season of our lives is meant to draw us closer to Christ. So when we are in a season of waiting, we should use that time to learn more about Christ and who we are in Christ.
A few of the many great verses from God’s Word about patience:
1. James 1:4(ASV), “And let patience have its perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, lacking in nothing.
Patience works in us to make us complete people who lack nothing. When we exhibit patience we are showing our maturity in Christ. That of course is contrary to the way the world thinks. But as Christians, we are told not to conform to the ways of the world (Romans 12:2). As you strive to be a patient person, you are building a strong foundation to excel in the work that God has for you to do.
2. Proverbs 15:8 (GNT), “Hot tempers cause arguments, but patience brings peace.”
It’s hard to be patient when people are rude, mean and angry. Plus as Christians, we have to make sure that we are not the ones being rude, mean and angry. (I’ve heard complaints about how mean some of us Christians can be). Our only hope is that if our hearts are open, the Holy Spirit will help us. Proverbs 15:1 reminds us that a gentle answer stops anger, but harsh words stir it up. People can sense when we are being genuine towards them. Patience is one of the best ways to show the LOVE of Christ.
3. Romans 12:12 (NIV), “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”
Prayer is key in learning patience. The closer we stay to the Lord in prayer, the more successful we will be at becoming patient people. God doesn’t want us to be miserable as we learn patience. We should have JOY as we hope in the Lord to do a marvelous work in our lives. He is always an oasis that we can rely on to refresh us. The Holy Spirit will quench even our deepest thirst.
***Please share any thoughts you have on PATIENCE in the comments.
Psalm 107:35 (NIV)
He turned the desert into pools of water and the parched ground into flowing springs;
Next Reading: Fruit of the Spirit: KINDNESS