We Americans are not known for our patience. We’re fans of fast food; we covet faster internet service; we expect to be able to connect with our loved ones instantly. We’re used to doing things on our schedule at the time we choose. However, the Bible tells us we need to wait for God’s timing, and this requires patience. a fruit of the Spirit.
How can we grow this fruit in our lives? Here are some suggestions.
- We must endure. Often waiting requires some kind of suffering, which is unpleasant, even when that suffering is more mental than physical. However, we are promised that that there will be a reward:
“More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” Romans 5:3-5
2. That brings us to the second thing we can do. Hope. We must remind ourselves of God’s promise:
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28
3. Which means we must trust in that promise, even when we don’t understand.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. “Proverbs 3:5-6
4. We also must not sit idle. There is always work for us to do, even when we are in “waiting” mode.
“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. “Galatians 6:9
Hmmm… that seems to take us back to endurance again!
Waiting may be uncomfortable, but it isn’t bad. It will teach us patience; we will learn to trust God; and in the end we will see that His timing is the best.
“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” Psalm 27:14
For more about patience see these posts:
A Different Kind of Fast