Thursday, 20 January 2022

Let Patience Grow

 Scripture: James 5 v 7 - 10: "Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. 

8  Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
9  Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door. 
10  Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience."

One of the fruits of the Holy Spirit is patience, also known as, long suffering, which describes it well.  We learn patience when we have suffered, or put up with a negative situation for a long time without complaining.

James 1 v 2 - 4: "My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 
3  Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
4  But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing."

Our Father is very patient because He has had to be concerned about human nature for thousands of years.  One of our many problems is impatience.  We live in an age of instant gratification and if our demands are not met promptly we demonstrate our displeasure very vocally.

Sometimes we take to the city streets in huge protests with placards and sometimes violence to make our anger known.  Definitely, some protests are justified, but others are just emotional and psychological blackmail.

Lawlessness, and anarchy, is growing in intensity around the world as the spirit of Antichrist rises to eventually dominate the whole world.  We need to display patience in the midst of this mayhem so people will see Jesus within us.  When they were condemning Him to death, He held His peace.  He said not a word.  He displayed patience because this was God's will to save the world.

Let us prepare for any eventuality, let us be established in patience so that our confidence in God is never shaken.  Having self control while we are under pressure is a great help.  Instead of losing our temper because someone has displeased us, rather
patiently listening to others and praying with them to bring them relief, helps our patience grow.

Impatience in drivers of vehicles leads to traffic accidents.  Some overtake slower vehicles on dangerous bends, or go through red lights to get to their destination quickly.  They have no thought of any other road users.  Perhaps driving tests should include a pressure situation that potential impatient, road rage, drivers could be observed and the drivers licence withheld until proper attitudes are established.  It would save many lives and prevent many injuries.

We have just had the figures released of tragically over 1600 deaths on South African roads over the festive season.  Most of these occurred at peak times and no doubt a good percentage were caused by impatience to first of all get to their holiday destination.  Or to get home without delay for starting work, or school, the next day.  Many were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or not having a valid drivers licence.

Our Father, the husbandman or farmer, is waiting patiently for us to change into the likeness of Jesus so that  He can reap the harvest of those who live righteously.  His Son, Jesus Christ, is our example, our model to live by.  

Too often we take as a model some famous  celebrity or sports person, who may at some stage let us down, causing confusion.  Prince Andrew and the awful, scandalous court case has let his mother, The Queen, down very badly, and tainted the image of the Royal Family, affecting many who would use them as models of decorum.

Jesus will never let us down.  He is the perfect model to emulate.  His discourse with the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4, not accusing or condemning her, but revealing His true nature which convinced her of His being the One who would come to save them.  Likewise with the woman about to be stoned for adultery.  He turned the tables on those with stones in their hands, Let the man who is without sin be the first to cast his stone!  No one could.

Patience is a great test of character.  It is vital in the upbringing and nurture of children.  Too many children suffer physical and or verbal abuse from an impatient parent.  It affects them negatively throughout their lives until a patient servant of God can minister healing of the bruises on their spirit.

Luke 4 v 18: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,"

As I said patience is a fruit of the Holy Spirit.  When we are filled with the Holy Spirit we will grow and show those fruit more and more abundantly.  Then we may be blessed in being able to teach others to be patient, loving, peaceful, kind and faithful people.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, we want to remain as precious souls in Your sight.  Please help us enhance the fruits of the Holy Spirit within us.  We know that various trials will bring us to patience and we pray You would use every opportunity to change us into the likeness of Jesus.  In Jesus' name.  Amen.