I am not the patient person I should be, I mean, as a Follower of Jesus, I should be the most patient person ever, right? I mean after all, when I accepted Jesus as Savior, I received the gift of the Holy Spirit whose fruit includes, you guessed it, Patience! I can be impatient with my wife, my family, my friends, on my job, with customers and even with God. I can also become impatient when my regular routine is upset, and that seems to be the case with the current restrictions enforced on my life. How about you? Sure, I have some simblance of patience, I mean, I am not freaking out and closing in on my breaking point, but I am ready for an evening at one of my favorite restaurants with my wife. But it is through the prompting of the Holy Spirit that I know, I need to be Patient. To wait for Him and His perfect timing as he allows and uses the current virus to complete and accomplished all that He intends.
“Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.”. Aristotle.awakenthegreatnesswithin
Patience is a trait all of humanity could use in their lives whether we are religious, spiritual, atheist, agnostic or Follower of Jesus. Everyone could use a dose of patience. As we continue to barrel towards the 2020 elections, our political opinions and emotions could use a double dose of patience. Our current political climate has become so polarized, we don’t take the time to have patience with our political opposites to consider their views or see there stands a human being behind that view who has the right to voice a particular opinion under the Constitution of the United States of America. As a Christian, God gives us many commands to love and treat our neighbor, as well as our enemies, with honor and respect without regard to race, creed, color, socially economic status, political designation, nationality or personal belief system. To do this requires a great deal of Patience with others that are at a polar opposite opinion and view of our own. To have this type of patience is the only way to engage in meaningful conversations, to build bridges and form relationships with those who are different than ourselves.
An expamle of my impatience would be in the early 90’s. I was working for a construction company that went bancrupt and I found myself out of a job. I had always wanted to start a restuarant and I thought this would be the perfect time. A local cafe’ was for sale and I just knew this would be the perfect opportunity to begin the realization of my dream. To forgo all of the formalities, I went for a look at the facility and financial records. My dream was becoming a reality. So as every good Christian does, I began to pray for doors to be opened and God’s will to be done. Trust and patience was needed at a premium. To make a long story short, the financing feel through and the door was shut, not opened. Prayer answered and not in the positive I was praying for. This would have been a perfect time to say, yes Lord, I accept your no because you have my best interest in mind, and wait Patiently for God to open another door. But noooooooooo, that wasn’t God’s answer I thought, He just wants me to work harder and find another door of opportunity for me to achieve these specific goals and desires. After ignoring God’s leading and receiving a couple of loans and setting up several vendor accounts, I was the proud owner of a small town cafe’. Just as a note, this was not the only decision that lead to the failure of this venture. After a couple of years of mismanagement, food was Great by the way, I took another job, closed the doors to the cafe’ and soon after filed for bancruptcy. So the moral of the story is, it is always better to be Patient and Wait on the Lord when the answer is no.
So in relation to our current pandemic, I find myself needing to be patient once again. Knowing that this is not the end of the world and things will return to some shape, form or resemblance of normalcy at some point in time. These are a few of the thoughts and habits I contemplate and lean into which help me in the waiting:
- God is in control Now if you are not a Believer you cannot understand this reasoning. If you have not examined the scriptures ( as I asked you to do at the end of my blog ‘What is Truth”) and their validity and historical accuracy, but have accepted someone else’s opinion as to what is true or not and maybe even that truth does not exist, you will blow this off and that is ok. One reason for this belief, as well as my faith, is the fact that over thousands of years, through multiple people and nations, and hundreds of prophecy’s, God has proved over and over that He alone knows and has control over the future.
‘Remember the former things, those of long ago; I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me. I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say, ‘My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.’Isaiah 46:9-10
- Concern for Others One of the characteristics of Jesus that I misunderstood when I became a Follower and began to study the Scriptures was his Meekness. I always thought of being meek as a derogatory term for a man, it meant submissive. The word represented someone who was week, allowing others to run over them, and wouldn’t stand up for themselves or others. WRONG! The Biblical definition of Meekeness is summed up by ‘ Power under Control’, having the ability and strength to exercise their will through power and force, yet chosing not to do so. There are members of our society who are older, weeker and more fragile for one reason or another that need to be considered. My wife is a caregiver for her older parents and my mom is a senior citizen as well. I choose not take the chance, while carelessly going about in my daily routine, of carrying the virus back to our family and possibly, no matter how slim the chance, costing them their remaining years of life.
‘Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. ‘Philippians 2:3-4
- Respect for our Leadership I do not know what political party your lean is to, but just for transparency, I am a registered Nonaffiliate because I see good and bad in both of the primary parties. No matter what Party or who the Mayor, Governor or President is, we are to pray for and support our leaders as long as we are not called into sinfull action or behavior. Pretty simple.
‘Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. ‘Romans 13;1-2
‘I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.1 Timothy 2:1-2
So even when I don’t agree, want take actions into my own hands or rebel against authority, I do my best to reign in my human behaviors of selfishness, self-centerness, anger and every other emotion that does not bring about anything good, provide an affirmative impact or put Jesus in a positive light. Praying everyday for the Fruit of the Spirit to be ever increasing in my life. So the news this week is that new positve counts are going down and stay-at home restrictions are being replaced with less restrictive ones. Join me as I strive to exibit Patience, for I believe we are heading down from the top of the curve and I can see light, at the end of the tunnel.
‘But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.Galations 5:22-23