Updated: Nov 24, 2021
Impatience is a sin I have not conquered, at least not in all circumstances of my life. I have , perhaps like many of you been attributed "the patience of a Saint" and often I can pull it off. Yet in my heart I am often impatiently sinning against those whom I serve.
In my time in the military we were subjected to a high stress environment which included long periods of waiting followed by short periods of high Adrenalin. Hurry up and wait was a real experience.
In our everyday life it is also a real experience and often more self-imposed than circumstantial. If you re a type A personality like me you often tend to be anxious and that does not lend itself to patience. Fatigue and weariness indeed play a part but we cant blame it totally on that. When we sin our weariness does not make us sin; weariness and the stresses of life only bring our sin to the surface for everyone to see.
11 it is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person.
Under the surface our pride feeds our impatience as we continue to try to control our life when we should be yielding to Christ. Just as the Israelites of the Exodus sinned over and over in impatience we too fall into sin. We try to wrestle God for control. If patient we can stand arms spread wide, ready to receive what God has planned and given to us. Our impatience grumbles and complains. If we remain patient we can rejoice even in the midst of real delay and adversity.
32 But recall the former days when, after you were enlightened, you endured a hard struggle with sufferings, 33 sometimes being publicly exposed to reproach and affliction, and sometimes being partners with those so treated. 34 For you had compassion on those in prison, and you joyfully accepted the plundering of your property, since you knew that you yourselves had a better possession and an abiding one.
Our patience today flows from a humble embrace of the reality that we do not know and cannot control most everything in our lives. Our patience comes from a deep and abiding trust that God will come through with his promises, no matter how impossible they seem at the moment.