Friday, August 7, 2015

Fruit of the Spirit - Patience

There are 9 Biblical attributes of the Fruit of the Spirit.  In this lesson we will talk about the fourth, which is patience or longsuffering.  These attributes characterize all who truly walk in the Holy Spirit.  All Christian should be producing these in their lives.  We are “being strengthened so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father…”Col. 1:11.

Definitions for longsuffering:  Patience, steadfastness under provocation, endurance, ability to endure persecution and ill-treatment.

Patience is one of the most difficult areas of a Christian’s life.  Our lives are constantly changing and testing our patience.  Because God is patient, Christians ought to be patient.  Patience is one of God’s attributes.  We often pray for patience.  God has been waiting patiently wanting to give us His patience even before we ask.  God is patient and He desires to give us this quality.  To be patient is to deal lovingly and kindly to those around us.

Patience produces unity in the church, loyalty to your country, harmony in families and community.  It comforts.  It has humility.  It teaches us to forgive.  Patience is being calm and without anger.  Patience waits and is never in a hurry.  Patience has self-control.

Do you have self-control in all circumstances?
Are you humble?
Do you always in a hurry anger?
Do you get angry often?

When we pray for patience, do we really mean it?  We ask God for something and can’t wait until He grants our request.  Remember God’s timing is not our timing.  God may answer our prayer today, tomorrow or next year.  It may even happen long after we have left this life.  We just need to trust God and wait on His timing.  He knows what is best.  God is not in a hurry so why should you be?

Waiting is not easy.  Wait in prayer.  Call on God and plead your case.  Tell Him your difficulties.  Express your confidence in Him.  Then wait in quiet patience.  Don’t complain as Israel did against Moses and never wish you could go back.  Pray that God’s will be done, not yours.

“Patience is not passive: on the contrary it is active; it is concentrated strength.” – Bulwer

Patience is the ability to accept disappointment or delay.  We should smile at setbacks and respond with a pleasant spirit.  Don’t be like others around you who curse and complain.  

Many have short fuses and it take very little to set them off.  There is road rage on the highways and even murder because tempers are lost.  Just be calm, cheerful and relaxed.  It’s not the end of the world.  It’s not life and death.  Have patience in all things, especially yourself.

Do you have a short fuse?
When disappointed, do you get frustrated and angry?

Next time we will talk more about the characteristics of the fruit of the Spirit.  We still have kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control to cover.  Hope to see you here.

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