~by Elizabeth Lapp
“The fruit of the Spirit is…longsuffering…” Galatians 5:22
Longsuffering or patience is a fruit of the Spirit. We are not born with this grace. A baby cries until it gets what it wants. One definition of the word is good temper, or a person who does not easily “fly off the handle”.
We have a story about Moses in Numbers 20, when he “lost it” and the results were drastic. Moses’ impatience with the people he was leading cost him the privilege of entering Canaan.
Romans 12:12 tells us to be patient in tribulation….Patience is enduring whatever God allows in our lives without demanding He remove it.
We live in an impatient generation. We do not like to wait. We want instant gratification.
Patience must be practiced in our relationships with people. If we are not patient with people and their faults we will not have friends. When you find yourself being impatient with others, remember, someone is being patient with you. Think of how patient God is with us.
A father was on a train with a crying infant. A rough man impatiently shouted, “Give the baby to it’s Mother.” The father replied, “The mother is in her casket in the baggage car. I’m sorry, I’m doing my best.” There was an awkward silence, then the rough man took the baby and lovingly care for it, telling the man to get some sleep. If we understood whey people act as they do, we would be more patient.
The Bible says, “Wait on the Lord.” We need patience with God. As a man was pacing the floor, someone asked, “Why are you pacing the floor?” He replied, I am in a hurry and God is not.”
We need patience as we wait for God to answer our prayers. We want answers now. George Mueller prayed sixty years for the salvation of one man. He was saved at George’s funeral. God’s delays are not denials. Is the Holy Spirit working the grace of patience in your life?
Patience preaches a sermon.