Saturday, August 7, 2010

Patience in Life’s Circumstances

“Abraham patiently endured and obtained the promise God had made.” Hebrews 6:15

Nicaragua 2010 069 There are so many situations in life that are totally out of our control, whether it’s the people we deal with, the uncontrollable situations of life or the time we wait for God’s design and blessing to manifest. Patience not only allows us to respond to incompetence and discrepancy in people in a positive and constructive way, it also helps us deal with life’s delays in a manner that will help us grow in character, trust and faith.

What attitudes create impatience in our lives?

  • Lack of trust – “God, is this the best solution?”
  • Ungratefulness – “I need more!”
  • Life is urgent – “I want it now!”

When these attitudes raise their ugly heads in the moment of change and delay, Psalms 37:7 and 40:1 challenge us to “rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him.” Don’t get upset about other people’s successes. God will hear and respond.

“Waiting patiently” includes the idea of twisting or braiding strands of string together to increase the overall strength and endurance of one single rope. We through patience are made one with God. We braid ourselves with Him, His life, and His Spirit take part of His strength to joyfully endure with strong expectation until the goal is achieved. It includes Paul’s exhortation in 2 Timothy to commit our situations to God and the promise in Ecclesiastes of the strength of unity. Patiently waiting and trusting in the LORD permits Him to bring the total result of His good, perfect and acceptable will to all situations and circumstances of our life.

“Waiting patiently” also refers to the waiting, the labor and the pain experienced while pregnant and giving birth. In our lives, patience is the gestation and birth process that occurs between the time God sows a seed of promise in our lives and when that promise becomes reality. After the conception of the promise, hope and faith help us wait and endure patiently as the blessing of God develops and emerges as reality in our lives. This anxious expectation is a knowing that the desired end is coming. This hope encourages us to “hold on” and not become desperate or depressed. We know the answer is coming. We are pregnant with the promise. Birth is certain.

Romans indicates that nature constantly “waits with eager longing” for freedom from the futility, death, and decay it was unwillingly subjected to because of Adam’s decisions millenniums ago and humanities present actions of disregard and abuse. We also frequently find ourselves in situations that are out of our control. We “groan” as we wait or reprogram a desired outcome. We call out to God when a spiritual result is not coming to pass as quickly as we planned. Again Romans speaks to the experience.

We ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it in with patience. ESV

As we go through the “birth pains” of new ideas, projects and relationships, we must braid our lives together with the Spirit of God so He can “help us in our weakness.” In this moment, He knows exactly what we need. We must patiently trust in the LORD, our strength. This is not a passive waiting. It is a decisive and active knotting of ourselves to God and His promises with faith and hope-filled braids of prayer, meditation. As we do, we will birth the spiritual promise here in this world. God will make all things work together for our good. He will be glorified.

This mixture of patient waiting, mutual trust, hopeful enduring, faith filled expectation and the strong labor of birth brings the desired results of our faith out of eternity and into today (Hebrews 11:1).

As Abraham did, we too can patiently endure and obtain the promises God has given.

How do you deal with impatience when you find yourself in circumstances beyond your control?  Leave your comments below.


Follow this link for the first blog in the sequence on Patience: Patience, Again?

No comments: