I have written much about patience over the last few years. It is probably because I need to hear about it as much as I need to share about it. Patience is one of the fruits of the Spirit with which I most struggle.
I know I am not alone. Many of you have submitted prayer requests asking for help with something you are waiting from God. Maybe you are waiting on a project that is delayed. Maybe you are waiting for a family member to come back to the Lord. Maybe you are waiting for a friend to fulfill a promise. Maybe you are waiting for an opportunity to present itself to make a change.
As the people of God, we wait! We don’t understand God’s timing. But he doesn’t ask us to understand his timing. He only asks that we trust his timing. We live with this motto:
- God’s timing, not mine.
- God’s will, not mine.
- God’s plan, not mine.
- God’s glory, not mine.
That does not mean that patience is easy. Sometimes it is extremely difficult. When it comes to having patience with another person, it can be frustrating.
You work hard with another person to help them make better decisions in life. But after so much hard work they slip back into old patterns and habits. You feel like giving up on them.
Or maybe the person has a stubborn streak to them. They have some deeply held beliefs that work against them. They could make their life easier if they would just listen to you. But they don’t want to consider any other possibilities. You feel like giving up on them.
It is hard to have patience with others. Especially when they are so needy and don’t do the things necessary to improve their situation. How long do you stick with someone before you give up? How long do you endure with them?
The answer is never! No one is past the point of redemption. If God has put a person in your life, there is a reason. I know they can be frustrating, but you can be a witness for God in their life. And they probably need that desperately. Maybe the reason they are the way they are is because no one has practiced patience with them.
Know that God does not give up on you. He is patiently waiting with you and for you. He is always there for you no matter how many times you mess up. It doesn’t matter how many time you go back to old patterns. It is God’s patience with us that empowers our patience with others.
- Where do you struggle with patience?
- What makes it hard to be patient with others?
- How has God been patient with you?