I consider myself a generally patient person. Then there are times where patience is an overestimated trait I cannot obtain.
I have found patience is generally intertwined with a give/receive mentality. For instance, to be patient, you must have given something personally (your time, advice, prayer, underwent an exam, doctor’s appointment, etc…) to receive something worth waiting for. This ultimately involves the anxious build-up of waiting where patience comes into play.
I currently work at a theme park and I am always fascinated by peoples’ behaviour when lining up for a ride. I completely understand how exciting it is when waiting in line to get on a ride and depending on the length of the line, patience can be challenging.
As a guest at a theme park, I just want to get on the ride straight away. The waiting is treacherous and standing there watching others have their turn before mine can sometimes be frustrating.
However, as a ride operator, I get to observe the waiting in line from a different perspective. For instance, rules are there for safety. Waiting patiently in line can take a toll and I have witnessed my fair share of incidents when bored guests have decided to disobey the rules set in place trying to occupy themselves in line. The rules are in place so guests do not hurt/injure themselves.
Some guests ignore the signage and swing on the gates/railings or rattle the chain on the gate that clearly blocks the way of entry. The ironic thing is, it doesn’t matter how much of a ruckus they make or how impatient they are, they will not get on the ride until I (the operator) have unlocked the gate and allowed them to enter.
This is the same in life. We can be impatient while waiting for something, but the truth is waiting is ultimately our only choice. We will not get our result, our answer to prayer, the long awaited reply, etc. any faster by making noise.
We have all heard the saying ‘patience is a virtue.’ Firstly, a virtue is defined as a ‘behaviour showing high moral standards,’ which, in the case of patience, is being able to subside the desperate yearning for something and be patient in the waiting. If patience is a virtue, we must learn how to deal with the waiting in a good, hopeful, God-focused, and God-glorifying way.
Patience, on the other hand, is indeed a virtue, but it is profoundly based on the expectancy of something being resolved for one’s peace of mind. Not only is patience a virtue, it is also a virtue of God and a fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).
Romans chapter 15 verses four to six says, “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
God has given us endurance and encouragement to exemplify patience in our situations, but more importantly, to ensure that we are patient with others as well.
When praying for an answer from God, I have found God never responds the way I want Him to but rather in the way I need Him to. Generally, I don’t realise at the time, but He always answers and it is always specific and perfect.
I personally know a lot of people who struggle to hear God’s voice but here’s the truth. A relationship goes both ways. If He can’t hear you, you can’t hear Him.
A lot of our prayers and heart cries can be answered if we talk to God and not just once to fill the need/requirement. Lazy Christians get nowhere and they tend to blame God when things don’t turn out the way they hoped or wanted.
This is a sign the Christian has not dedicated enough time, or heart, into prayer, but has already decided on what the result is going to be. When this happens, the person generally ends up discouraged and disappointed, because they feel like God wasn’t there and He didn’t listen to them or answer their prayer.
There is a quote which says, ‘It’s hard to hear God’s voice when you’ve already decided what you want him to say.’ The best thing we can do in those situations is not go ahead with our plans but give them to God and submit to Him completely, knowing His plans are bigger and better than ours.
We need to dedicate time to God, praying and asking Him for guidance, courage, endurance, patience, and graciousness.
Psalm chapter 40 verse one –"I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry."
Charles Spurgeon says, “half our fears arise from neglect of the Bible.” Patience is not only a virtue, but it is a way in which we allow God’s hand of blessing, God’s peace, and His graciousness overcome us and our situation.
Romans chapter 12 verse 12 –"Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer."
I want you to feel encouraged today – whatever you are going through, whatever you are praying for, whatever results you are awaiting, be patient in the waiting and know God is always listening. He greatly cares for you and loves you unconditionally.
Philippians chapter four verse six –"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God."
Romans chapter eight verse 25 –"But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience."
Cartia Moore is a sword fighter, trained and skilled in the art of fencing. She has recently graduated from her Bachelor of Arts degree and has completed an Honours in Screen & Media Studies. She is now going on to do a Master of Teaching (Secondary), focusing in the teaching areas of English and Film studies. She is passionate and driven to inspire and encourage others to seek and find their worth and value in Him.
Cartia Moore’s previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/cartia-moore.html