Mathew 5: 10 – 11 —- Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. “Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for my sake.
Patience is the powerful attribute that enables a man or a woman to remain steadfast under strain and continue pressing on in life. Patience is the ability to accept delay or disappointment graciously. If we can bear unjust accusation without getting upset we are developing patience.
I knew a young man who was overweight but after a gap of 2 months when I met him again, he looked different – slim, trim and healthy! I asked him the reason and he told me he wears a pedometer (an instrument for estimating the distance travelled on foot by recording the number of steps taken) and is able to monitor his body movements and the amount of energy spent every day. So I started wearing one and walked at least 12,000 steps a day but after two weeks when I weighed myself, my weight had increased.
I was astonished because in addition to my regular walk I would even walk at the airport everywhere with my luggage back and forth to finish my daily goal. It was very discouraging to see my result; I had two options – quit or continue. It was painful to run around before coming to preach and then stand for hours. But I was determined to be patient and press forward.
Patience is calm endurance based on the knowledge that God is in control. This knowledge comes from the Word of God. For example, if you are serving God’s people and working in the Kingdom of God it is a good thing. Then suddenly out of the blue comes persecution and false accusation and everything seems to go wrong. The general tendency is to retaliate. But a person with patience calmly endures and waits on God.
The above scripture says we are blessed when we are persecuted and should be glad because we have an assurance of a reward in heaven. When we focus on this knowledge, we are calm and patient. We rejoice and do not accept the false accusations from the devil but reply with words of blessing and goodness.
Ephesians 6 says we do not fight against flesh and blood but against spiritual wickedness. We see the person coming against us but it is the spirit inside that person that causes him/her to do so. We need to bind and cast out that evil spirit. We can do this by planting a seed of love, as Satan has no defence against it.
Our natural human nature wants to retaliate but the knowledge of God’s Word helps us to remain calm because now we see with our spiritual eyes beyond, way beyond the physical senses.
A Christian without patience is like a soldier without arms.