Sunday, June 7, 2015
Picking Fruit - Patience
How did we do this past week? I have no doubt that everyone did something good! It's amazing when we put our minds to it all of the goodness that can be accomplished! This week, we are taking a view of patience. Of all of the fruits of the spirit, I believe this one is the one I struggle with the most. I could probably do an entire series on patience, but that will be a different year :)
I see patience in two different aspects. The first way I see patience is a total reflection of myself having patience with others. Although I continue to try to work on this fruit, I know I continually fail. As we all know, I tend to be a bit controlling (I can hear Juan saying it now - a BIT controlling)? Yet, it is an area where I realize I may not have patience with other people. Sometimes, people don't move fast enough or think fast enough or do fast enough. Really? What is my issue!! When I think back on those times, I frustrate myself believing that my time is any more precious than anyone else's time. I'm learning and I continue to try to grow in this area.
Can you relate to me? Are there times when our LACK of patience gets the best of us? It's at those times that we need to pray - yes, right at that time. I have learned that when I take the time to pray during times of lacking patience, God provides just the right amount of reflection to move me forward to a better place. He gets me to the point where I see things from the other person's point of view, not mine. Oh yes, I'm a definite work in progress, but my walk in faith continues to grow. The more I seek God, the more I see God.
The other aspect of patience comes in my waiting on answers from God. If you think some people don't respond quick enough for me, you can imagine my high expectations from God!! Prayers where He tells me to wait, questions that I don't have answers for, hopes that don't seem to get responded to - all of God's wonderful plan. See, those are the key words - GOD'S WONDERFUL PLAN. Not my plan, not my journey. No, if I truly believe in my God, then I need to believe in His plan. Once again, when things don't work fast enough for me or answers aren't forthcoming, I find myself "taking control" and making this happen. When I move in this fashion, I always come up with the short end of the stick. Why? Because it isn't the plan that is supposed to be happening - it's not from God. I am sure we have all heard often, it's not in MY time, it's in GOD'S time. When things aren't going right and I am losing my perspective, I know at that point, I need to pray - right at that moment. Bottom line, it is having simple faith to know that God is in control. Simple faith that he will answer my questions, respond to my prayers, ensure I have the hopes that HE desires for me. To me, a great verse I constantly keep at hand is, "Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer." (NIV) Romans 12:12
Yes, the two aspects of patience is a fruit I will continually need help with. I also know that I have all the help I need in the hands of God. Trusting Him to help me be more patient with others. Trusting Him to help me be more patient with Him. What a loving and wonderful God we have that He is the true model of patience. Imagine how much patience He has with us.
Heavenly Father, please continue to be with me when patience seems to be evading me. Help me to show patience to all I encounter. This includes you, God. Help me have patience in all I say and do - knowing that patience in relation to you will always bring great rewards.