Thursday, November 13, 2008

Patience

From Wikipedia:

Patience (ˈpā-shənz) is the state of endurance under difficult circumstances, which can mean persevering in the face of delay or provocation without becoming annoyed or upset; or exhibiting forbearance when under strain, especially when faced with longer-term difficulties. It is also used to refer to the character trait of being steadfast.

I have never been a patient person. I did get married after a mere 8 months of dating my husband and was pregnant one month later. :) I get impatient waiting for my fingernails to grow so I bite them all off. I get impatient waiting for my pants that I wanted to wear to get dry so instead of just finding a new pair I put them on damp.

But the fruits of the spirit are, "love, joy, peace, patience, kindess, goodness, faithfulness, gentlesness and self control." Galatians 5:22

"For when your faith is tested, your endurance(patience) has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be strong in character and ready for anything." James 1:3-4

Do you know what the verse before that says? James 1:2? It says, "Whenever trouble comes your way, let it be an opportunity for joy." Really? How many of us are joyous when trouble comes our way? I can't say that I am. Instead I'm overcome with worry, fear, anger, uncertainty and the list goes on. Today in Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest the devotion is on faith. He says, "All our fears are wicked, and we fear because we will not nourish ourselves in our faith. How can anyone who is identified with Jesus Christ suffer from doubt or fear!"

I've been really struggling with patience in the last few days. I'm having a hard time being patient and waiting for a doctor to call me back with an answer as to why there are these genetic abnormalities with Emeric and what they mean in relation to his symptoms/disease. It's hard waiting 2 months for test results and then getting them and still not knowing their significance, if any. And we heard about another genetic abnormality found on yet another test. Again, we don't have an answer.

At least not in regards to these tests.

I know the answer though. And it comes from God. He says, "I am wonderfully good to those who wait for him and seek him... For the Lord does not abandon anyone forever. Though he brings grief, he also shows compassion according to the greatness of his unfailing love. For he does not enjoy hurting people or causing them sorrow."

God has given me an answer. And I think of it like this:

My dear child,
I too have watched my son suffer, I know that pain. But just as the purpose of His death was fulfilled so will My purpose be fulfilled in you. I will never leave you. Rest in me, let me carry your load. Trust in my plan and understand that my love for is greater than you could ever know.

Your Loving Father

Every so often God gives me a glimpse into understanding His purposes. Could I learn patience another way? Probably. But, would it be meaningful enough to really change me? Probably not. You see, God uses the things most precious to us for good. He is using Emeric to break me. To bring me to a place of complete and utter dependence on him. Do I still struggle? Of course! Daily! But the difference is that I hear God's voice now. I hear him telling me to lay it down at his feet.

We all go through challenges everyday that test our patience. But we're given a choice. We can choose to get irritated and ask a million questions; why me, why doesn't anything ever go my way, what did I do to deserve this, don't I deserve _____?

Or we can choose to say, You know what God. I don't understand why you're bringing me through this but I will trust in Your plan. I know there's a purpose and that is to strengthen my faith. It's to bring me closer to You.

And isn't that what we want?

We don't learn lessons the easy way. We don't learn lessons of endurance when everything falls easily into place. We don't learn to lean on God until we're weak and can't stand on our own.


I waited patiently for the Lord to help me,
and he turned to me and heard my cry,
He lifted me out of the pit of despair,
out of the mud and the mire.
He set my feet on solid ground
and steadied me as I walked along.
He has given me a new song to sing,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see what he has done and be astound.
They will put their trust in the Lord.
Psalm 40:1-4

2 comments:

ben and erin said...

nicole that is beautiful. i was so encouraged while reading that. hey, what is the reference of the verse about half way down -- I am wonderfully good to those who wait for him and seek him...?
thank you for sharing!

Nicole said...

Oops, I forgot to put the reference. It's Lamentations 3:25

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