Patience and Longsuffering
Be Strong, Be Well — Thursday, April 30
Due to this long shelter-in-place order, some people have become irritated and aggravated. Americans in general are not very patient people. We’re so used to having, getting, or receiving what we need and many times what we want, when we want it. We become impatient and stressed out when something doesn’t come in the time frame we think it should come.
An example, is the guy forth in line at the bank drive through, who started laying on his horn because he thought the one in the front of the line was taking too long. Turns out the machine crashed and they told her to wait for it to reboot. This was reported to those in line by one kinder soul, who got out of his car and asked if the woman in front needed any help.
Even as the first phase of the re-opening of the state/country is scheduled to begin soon, is this enough to rescue us from our own impatience? I’m not here to voice my opinion on the politics of such things. I’m here to say we all need to cultivate patience, long-suffering and steadfastness in our character. Patience is part of the Christian graces which we all need to develop (2 Peter 1:6).
James said, “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing” (James 1:2-4)
Patience and long-suffering are related. Patience is defined as, “a steadfast waiting for; a patient enduring, perseverance.” The biggest difference in longsuffering is, “forbearance, and being slow in avenging wrongs.” How thankful we are for God’s longsuffering with us (2 Peter 3:9; Romans 2:4)!
In Colossians 1:10, 11 these two terms are used together “...that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy.”
With the knowledge of God’s word we have the strength that He gives to be patient and to suffer long with joyfulness. Christians must strive to restrain themselves when trials come our way. We will refuse to succumb to the pressures of the moment. We will not allow any circumstance to destroy our patience, long-suffering or steadfastness.
It does no one any good if we don’t calm down, relax, and be patient. No matter what others may do, we will control ourselves and show them the joy Christians have in our hearts even in tough circumstances. —Chris