There’s Power in Patience

GodReflection: Power Words

So I say, walk by the Spirit—the fruit of the Spirit is patience—since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Galatians 5

garyguarujaI’m the customer. I’m always right. Just in case you haven’t noticed—we the people of the United States of America are an arrogant lot.

Raised as a white, middle class male I made an A+ in my grasps of the concept of “unalienable Rights”—they are mine.

My treatment expectations run high. My red, white, and blue, DNA expects others to honor my rights as a customer, in traffic, and in an argument. It is my right to be right.

Jesus has a better way. It is a Spirit given fruit that grows in my life—the fruit of patience.

patience6At the core of the concept of patience is to exercise tolerance without anger when a clear right or due expectation is violated.

I need an extra supply of that fruit.

Satanic oil in the machinery of life is conflict. Where did I ever get the idea that my life deserves freedom from conflict? Conflict rises within my emotions with the violation of my rights.

Conflict points its finger towards me in traffic. Dog walkers—otherwise lovely people—violate my right when they let their pets poop on my lawn. Conflict rises within. How does patience react?

The store clerk is there only to take my money with a frown while missing the entire concept of service. Doctor’s hire poorly trained staff to make sure they see my blood pressure reaches its maximum height. How does patience react?

Teenagers feel compelled to open car windows and share their eardrum busting music with me at the highest possible volume. How does patience react? Where does patience come from?

Yesterday, I received a toll bill with three-month old toll charges and exorbitant late fees. Since it is the first notice I’ve received, the late charges are unjust.  Clearly, I’ve received a wrong. How does patience react?

patience5Here is what I think. (I wish it were also a consistent reaction on my part.)

Is it possible that God is fully aware of Satan’s gummy oil?

Is it possible that God builds into every hurt, disappointment, and less than desired treatment I receive, the opportunity for others to catch a glimpse of His rich grace? A glimpse that appears due to my patience reaction.

When I remember my place in Jesus and step out of the way, the Holy Spirit steps in and all of a sudden in patience I find my reaction mirrors God.

The Psalmist writes a person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense. I might add it is also to show God’s glory when I take advantage of Spirit powered patience and overlook an offense.

I am beginning to see that Jesus is the lens through whom I am to understand Scripture since he came to show us the Father.  When I look to Jesus many of my former poorly conceived tools of Biblical interpretation fail to hold Spirit filled water.

Spirit gifted patience flows from the power of the cross. It flows from Jesus.

restore10Jesus on the cross is the ultimate lesson of patience as he exercised tolerance without anger when a clear right or due expectation is violated.

After all, the Son of God did nothing to deserve death.

I need an extra supply of that fruit.

Lord, may I walk by the Spirit and exhibit the fruit of patience. May power from patience lived by the Spirit be consistently demonstrated to an antagonistic world. Power me to keep in step with the Spirit and be patient before those who still need to see your glory. In the name of Jesus, I pray.

Stay tuned.

Dr. Gary J. Sorrells – A GodReflection on Patience as a Word of Power.


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