James 5: 8 -9 —– You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. Do not grumble against one another, brethren, lest you be condemned. Behold, the Judge is standing at the door!
We don’t generally like to wait. We get frustrated waiting in the check out queue that’s moving slowly or waiting behind the slow car in the fast lane. We are always in a rush to get to the next place or the next thing.
This mindset often carries over into our spiritual lives with us rushing to the next big thing.
But while most of us are in a hurry, it seems God is usually not in a hurry. The Scriptures say He is slow at going about things. He always has a plan and a purpose for everything.
Developing patience is a part of life and one of God’s tools for developing people.
God rarely does things according to our timeframe, and because of this we can easily get discouraged. If we aren’t careful, we’ll think He’s uncaring or mad at us.
In the Gospels we see this happening to Mary and Martha while they are waiting on Jesus to come and heal their brother, Lazarus. When Jesus finally shows up, He is accused of taking too long.
God always has good reasons for making us wait. The Bible is full of stories of people having to wait on God, such as Noah, Abraham, Moses, Joseph, David, Daniel, Jesus, Paul and countless others.
Patience in waiting for small things leads to having patience in the bigger things. If we can’t wait for God to do a small thing, we certainly can’t wait for something bigger.
Patiently waiting during the difficult times develops our relationship with God. The great men and women of the Bible all had one thing in common. They patiently waited on God. They learned that their life was directly proportionate to their intimacy and dependency upon God. For them, a relationship with God wasn’t a get rich quick scheme. For many of them it was a matter of life and death.
To develop patience, we must be willing to go through afflictions without getting offended, being bitter or grumbling. When a person is hurting under the pressure of trials but refuses to grumble or murmur they are patient.
When a person is deeply hurt, physically or emotionally by another person, the normal tendency is to retaliate and give back a fitting response. That is an attitude of revenge. A God kind of response is to wait in faith until God shows up. But should the trials continue, if the person still maintains the same relationship with God, this person is patient.
When you are tempted to lose patience with someone, think how patient God has been with you all the time.