Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Wishin' and Hopin' and Thinkin' and Praying

It's Hump Day everyone! Yes, I did capitalize that title , because to make it through the work-week, you have to have a little Hump Day celebration.

Truthfully though, today is a big reminder for me on the one thing I need to work on beyond all else. That is, patience. Yes we all need a little patience to make it through our work week. Heck, we all need a little God given patience to make it through our work DAY sometimes. But the kind of patience I am talking about goes deeper than that.

Yes, I demonstrate surface impatience all of the time. I hate to wait in line. Traffic drives me bonkers. And let me tell you, I truly believe that with some hard work and perseverance, ANYTHING can be done quickly and efficiently and before schedule.

The thing is, life doesn't always work out like that. I often find myself stuck in long lines and behind the slowest, most inconsiderate drivers you will find anywhere (props to Orlando for being an amazing place to live, but come on people, merging is not that difficult.) And those tasks that should have been done yesterday? Well, they are still piling up on my desk, my floor, in my planner, and have spilled into all facets of my life.

So, as I get older, it is becoming more and more clear how essential patience is becoming to my overall mental health and well-being. The truth is, there is so much more to being patient, particularly in the biblical sense, than what we all typically perceive. We think if we wait long enough, and are diligent in restraining ourselves from the inevitable break-down we SO want to have, we are demonstrating the kind of patience that would make our mothers proud. However, this idea of passively waiting, or gentle composure, is not what God intended for us when he touted faithfulness as a fruit of the spirit, and asked us to seek it out in our everyday lives.

No, the kind of patience we all need to be working on, myself in particular, is the active kind of patience. The type that not only waits for something to happen, but waits with a joyful hope that that need will be filled, that God has already set in motion a path for you that will lead to a life of blessing.

I know I find myself often wondering why things don't happen when I want them to, when I NEED them to, when I've worked so hard for them. Ouch, there are a lot of I's in that sentence. Why is it so hard for me to trust God to take care of me, when He has never left my side, He has never failed me? Why is it so hard for me to be patient and let his will for my life play out?

We all like to be in control, to feel the immediate cause and effect of our efforts, to know unconditionally that if I finish A, then B will happen. (Oh, if-then statements. Anybody else having a flashback to fifth grade here?) Anyways, we like to see immediate results, because that is what we have been conditioned for. But life does not always follow an easily explained cause and effect pattern. Sure, if you put water in a freezer, it will then turn to ice. But just because you worked your ass off on that last proposal, does not mean you will get that raise.

My challenge is this. Start living your life with patience, the true, real biblical patience, that can only be found in the Lord. Wait with a joyful heart. Have faith that you will be granted the provision you need. Know that you will be blessed in a way that you can't even imagine yet.

And in the meantime? Practice on that awful driver in front of you.

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer" - Romans 12:12

Where do you find yourself becoming impatient? What do you do when you notice it happening?


  1. hi-- coming over from your comment on my blog. two things:
    1. americans are impatient! my friend had two french friends stay with her and the two frenchies could not get over the impatience of americans-- especially in regards to food. they said that with dinner, the french take at least an hour to prepare it and then at least an hour minimum to enjoy it with family and friends.

    2. my dog is a pembroke welsh corgi-- same family as an australian shepherd, i.e. a herding dog. australian shepherds are SUPER smart and have tons of energy and corgis are kind of a step down from that-- not as smart, not quite as hyper (although my doggie is an exception to that rule.)

    they are honestly great dogs-- good size (about 30 lbs), friendly, good-natured and super cute. :)

    but i'm obviously biased.

    thanks for your comment!!

  2. I could definitely use a little more patience too. Even though I try, some days I feel crunched for time and just get so annoyed when things don't happen exactly when I want them to. That's something I need to work on for sure!

    PS - Thanks for your comment on my blog!