The Cure for Impatience

How often have those of us who pray asked for patience?  Not a day goes by that I don't feel the need for greater patience.  There are times that I pray that God would hurry and give me patience.

But then perhaps I'm praying for the wrong answer?  While we humans may believe that patience is the antidote for impatience, I've come to believe the God has another answer in mind.  To illustrate, let me take you back over my last 24 hours:

  • "Just pull out of that space already!  Why is it so stinkin' hard?"
  • "Green means go!"
  • "The sign says slower traffic stay right!  If I'm on your tail, then you're obviously slower traffic!"
  • "Why do I have to keep explaining this when you're not paying attention?"
  • "I've been praying for the same thing for weeks now.  Why hasn't God answered?"
First of all, it's a good thing I work from home so I don't have to drive much.  (Maybe that's how God's answered my prayer....let me think about that some more.)

If I'm honest as I peel back to get the root of my impatience, what I'm really saying is "My time is more important than yours" and "I know the best way for doing things, and, naturally, it's my way."  In other words, the root of impatience is pride or self-conceit.  When I'm impatient, am I not just trying to put myself ahead at a cost to others?  If I truly have a servant mentality and consciously lift others up above myself, that impatient urge should be tampered.

In the Bible, patience in one translation will often be translated as "long suffering" or "perseverance" in another.  Patience, by its nature, requires the bearing of discomfort.  For example, according to the Apostle Paul, love isn't just warm and fuzzy.  "Love is patient."  (Cor. 13:4)  In the KJV, "Charity suffereth long."  In my simple mind, love requires us to suck it up and stop acting/thinking as if we deserve more or better.

So...the cure for impatience is not patience, it's humility.  

It's a little trickier when combined with parental duties but we'll leave that for another post.

See Love Is Patient on Desiring God.

Lord, Forgive all the times that I show impatience.  As You have been patient with me, who deserves nothing, let me be patient with others.  As You have loved me, let me love others.  

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