patience – μακροθυμέω mak-roth-oo-meh’-o; to be long-spirited
JKV = suffereth long
Be patient? Ugh. Some people try my patience more than others. What does that mean? Right here at the top of the list the Apostle Paul generated for me, is a trait that exposes my heart for the temperamental, selfish thing it is.
To offer patience is to practice Agape, which I am commanded by Jesus to give. I am to respond to people and situations as one who “suffereth long.” I am to be, as the Greek defines it, a woman who is “long-spirited.” I am to respond to an irritant with patience whether it’s the first or thousandth time I’ve encountered it. Impossible? It is for me. Yet Jesus is clear- this is a non-negotiable.
I wonder if you’re as good as I am at making excuses for being impatience. God is teaching me to come humbly to Him for help BEFORE I come justifying my anti-loving behavior. That practice keeps bringing me face-to-face with the depth of my own sinful nature.
Is God compassionate as I struggle to extent patience? He is. The irony is that God meets me in the struggle with loads of (wait for it) – patience. So, as I struggle to be patient, God patiently tends to me. Note to self.
God asks me to do the impossible under the sway of the Holy Spirit. That’s the only way is stops being impossible. I need Him or I’m going to fail to be patient. I hear God say to me: “Anne, go out and love someone by being patient with them. Draw from Me and give generously to that person who tries your patience. Pay attention to Me and My leading in those difficult moments. Spend everything I give to you. I’ll keep the coffers full! You can afford to be exceedingly generous. Honestly, you can’t afford NOT to.”
because He first loved us.”
1 John 4:19