Patience Is a Virtue
For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. – Hebrews 10:36
It had been unusually hot in our town for a long period. Without air-conditioning, I found myself becoming impatient
just because I was so warm.
On one particular day, I opened my refrigerator to take out a pitcher of juice, and struggled to move containers around so I could remove the pitcher.
What frustrated me most was a small plastic bottle of salad dressing. As I tried to remove the pitcher of juice, the salad dressing came along. Three
times I pushed that plastic pest back on the shelf, but each time it again followed the pitcher out. Finally, in complete frustration, I grabbed the
bottle and pitched it on the floor behind me. Of course, then I had to clean the salad dressing from the floor as well as the cupboard where it had
splashed when it landed! I had made more work for myself in an already hot kitchen. Sigh . . .
Clearly, I still have a ways to go in learning patience. However, the Lord used that situation to speak to me about something more important than spilled
salad dressing. How often do I react toward others with impatience born of frustration, thereby making my problems bigger than they needed to be? For
example, if someone says or does something mean to me, I know that “a soft answer turneth away wrath” (Proverbs 15:1) and that is how I should reply.
Yet, sometimes an attitude of “I am right, they are wrong” tries to settle in. Acting on those emotions can result in broken relationships and hurt
feelings, all of which could be avoided by exercising a little patience instead.
Allowing frustration to make us impatient with others can tangle up our lives in a hurry. It creates messes that we have to go back and clean up later.
How much better it would be to respond to someone’s unkind or thoughtless remark with kind words or even silence, rather than with a hurtful or mean
reply. With the Lord’s help, we can do just that. Whatever situation we are presented with, we can respond by following the instructions given in God’s
Word, and then wait patiently for Him to do the rest. It pays to be patient!