*** I started writing this a little over 1 month ago — but just haven’t felt very inspired to write lately (lots going on…) — but now finally, here we go. ***
Have you ever met people who have a knack for calmly, patiently being able to wait for long periods of time? THOSE people are Amazing!!!
I am NOT one of those people – the calm/patient waiters. It is difficult for me to hold my tongue when I have something to say -or- to wait my turn when I know what I want to do or need to do. I suppose I can chalk this up to genetics to some extent, because this trait seems to be conserved within several members of my family. But okay, enough about me and my plight with waiting… This post is about the concept of PATIENCE in a different sense.
Merriam-Webster defines patience as follows: “…the capacity, habit, or fact of being patient – able to remain calm and not become annoyed when waiting for a long time or when dealing with problems or difficult people“.
Okay, so as we get older, some of the first part (waiting for some time) can become a bit easier (think waiting in lines) – as we gain an understanding of the way the world works. However, dealing with problems or difficult people, Woah!!! that one sometimes never sets in. But I actually want to focus on the first one again – but this time, in the context of waiting for an outcome (i.e. an understanding, a guidance, a direction, etc.).
Previously, I’ve written a little bit about seeking and finding purpose in our lives. I commented on how we need to get about the business of finding out what God wants us to do with our time and talents, and then setting out to confidently and obediently go after it. The problem, I have found (or rather, am continuing to find out…), is that the uncertainty of it all, the unknown, the unseen, unfelt, the not yet experienced – these are all killers of patience! Now maturity (whatever that is supposed to imply) does help somewhat, but again, these “eroders” of patience continue to creep up time and again.
I must tell you – this is quite frustrating (this waiting for my new company to kick in, waiting to find & understand my “real purpose” apart from my vocational and family responsibilities, this seeking to be more confident and more content, this desire to see and expect the best in folks, this longing for “justice” – whatever all that might encompass) !!
But lo, just when the skies appear to be greying and the drops of rain fall upon our heads, our dreams — I hear a whisper… “Hey forgetful one, impatient one, fearful one, doubtful one – have not I watched over you time and again and blessed you beyond measure… each and every time??” (To which I usually reply: “Thanks for the reminder, Lord…“)
So the next time you are standing by the tracks, bag packed, waiting for the train to come, remember these words:
11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. 12 In those days when you pray, I will listen. 13 If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me”. Jeremiah 29:11-13 (NLT)
6 “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus”. Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT)
Okay, more to come in subsequent posts…