Picture yourself waiting in a checkout line that hasn’t moved for ten minutes. Many of us would feel frustrated. We live in a generation that expects instant results.
Everyone struggles with some degree of impatience. We’re born with this trait—think about a three-month-old who wants milk in the middle of the night. The inborn reaction is to fuss at the first hint of discomfort and to keep at it until the need is met. Patterns from our old “flesh” nature make this a continual battle for most people, but one that is very worthwhile to fight.
Let’s consider the biblical definition of patience. It can mean both longsuffering and perseverance, or not giving up and yielding under pressure. In either case, it reveals itself when we are willing to wait without frustration while suffering or experiencing some strong desire. In other words, we accept difficult situations without giving God deadlines. What’s more, patience means accepting what the Lord gives, on His timetable—or what He chooses not to give. This quality results in inner peace and lack of stress. Meanwhile, we should pray, obey, and persist as we seek God’s direction.
The danger of impatience is that we might miss the Lord’s perfect plan and His blessing. Only when we trust our Father’s will and timing can we rest peacefully.
What causes you stress? Carefully examine whether you are taking matters into your own hands or releasing the circumstance to almighty God. Listen to Psalm 37:7, which says, “Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him.” Seek His way and His timing. Anything else can be destructive.
For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.
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