Patience is so hard for me. I envy people who have tons of patience. It’s one of the areas where I have to rely on God. On my own, I don’t have any patience! I pray for patience all the time. In fact, it’s probably the “virtue” that I must work on the most. I have to pray for it constantly because if I don’t, I become frustrated with everything and everyone around me very quickly.
The Bible calls patience a few different names: patience, endurance, constancy, and my favorite – longsuffering. You’ll only find the word longsuffering in certain translations. Longsuffering is my favorite word for it because it describes how I feel in situations that require patience – I feel like I’m suffering for a long time and it’s usually not enjoyable.
WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ABOUT PATIENCE
The Bible talks about patience and how we’re to have patience with each other and in our life situations. The way we know that we’re supposed to be patient is because this is how Jesus is. We need to be just as patient with others as Jesus is with us.
Here are two example situations in the Bible that deal with patience:
- Galatians 6:2 – Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ. The law of Christ refers to Jesus’ command to “love your neighbor as yourself”. To help each other through tough situations we need to have patience. Someone’s situation may seem very hard to them but very simple to you. You must have patience with them even when you feel like they are making things harder than they need to be. It takes a lot of patience to bear each other’s burdens.
- James 1:2-3 – Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. When it feels like your faith is being tested, are you patient or do you get frustrated? Honestly, sometimes I get frustrated. This testing of faith challenges us to stay strong in our faith for a longer period of time than maybe we’re comfortable with.
Prayer is also something that requires patience. God doesn’t always answer our prayers right away, so we must wait for His answers. Patience is hard for many people and we live in a world where we are constantly surrounded by something called instant gratification – the ability to get what we want right away or within a short amount of time.
Remember – God builds patience in us so that we can endure difficult things such as trials and “situations” with friends, family and people who may seem difficult. The more patience we have, the easier it becomes to show God’s love to the world.
And let endurance (patience) have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. — James 1:4