God's word in today's world

Patience, o, patience!

I wonder why we are so impatient. Is it part of the fall into sin?

You know, if you stay in a town where the traffic is bad, you must be on the lookout all the time. No time for sleeping on the job. If you want to turn right at the traffic lights and the light turns green, you drive as far as possible forward into the intersection so that as many cars as possible behind you can also move forward. When the light changes, all those cars can then make the turn and the intersection will be clear again.

So, while the auntie sits and wait on the while line for the oncoming traffic to pass, I steam, because almost every time the light turns orange just as the last car passes. Then only she can slip across and I have to wait for the next cycle of green lights. Then my patience has long gone.

Probably this is not such a good example. Each of us has that one thing that tests our patience and makes us lose our patience. I realise all too well that many of us have a measure of impatience inside of us. But that is still not a reason or excuse to feed the impatience in our lives.

O yes, there’s another major source of frustration that often leads to a small-scale battle. My wife and IT. For months we have been doing radio recordings right here in our house. We use a fairly simple processing program, but my wife succeeds in getting stuck somewhere almost every time. When she becomes discouraged and calls for help from the recording room, my impatience rises to the surface, because I cannot understand how she can forget the simple adjustments so often.

I must confess: I then rush to the recording room, leaving my patience behind right here in the study. When I look back on my way of doing things, I realise one cannot act with love and compassion if you leave your patience behind. On the contrary − you become a real bully trampling on others!

Mmmm, how well I preach to myself.

Patience is one of the characteristics of a Christian. Unfortunately, we so easily rush into places without it and create destruction.

14Be patient with each person, attentive to individual needs.

Many of us often fail here. I suspect it is because we do not take the other person and her or his feelings into account. We must bury our impatience. We must deliberately go to the other person – yes, me too when my wife again has an unnecessary IT query – and ignore the own self.

Make sure that your patience is in action wherever you are dealing with others. But again, we cannot do this on our own. That is why we must make time very morning for devotionals.

We must allow our spiritual batteries to be charged sufficiently so that they can carry us through the day, and we must allow the Spirit to guide us. He is the king of patience. Remember how much patience He has with you!


1 Thessalonians 5:12-15


Where does your patience fail?

Who is normally responsible for that?

How can you work differently with patience?


Father, I must confess that I too often leave my patience out of it. I know patience is a fruit of your Spirit who lives in me, and that is why, with your help, I can be tolerant and patient towards everybody. Amen.

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