August 16, 2011

Developing Patience

Colossians 3:12-14

On any given day, we may encounter frustrating people and situations, such as the slow driver, mischievous child, or uncooperative co-worker. We may feel like lashing out, but God wants us to stay calm and be patient with everyone (1 Thess. 5:14).

Why should we want to develop patience?

• Our calling. Though once alienated from the Lord, we have been made part of His family through Jesus’ shed blood. As God’s children, we’re called to live a life worthy of Him—one that is characterized by humility, gentleness, and patience (Eph. 4:1-3).

• Biblical teaching. Scripture tells us to be tolerant of one another, bearing each other’s burdens, and responding with kindness.

• Jesus’ example. The Lord demonstrated patience toward Peter’s impetuous actions, the crowd’s demands, and the leaders’ false accusations. We are to cultivate an attitude of composure.

• Healthy relationships. Our impatience can hurt others and close off dialogue. Responding calmly gives room for the other person to confess wrongdoing, explain his attitude, and make changes.

• God’s approval. The apostle Paul wrote that we are to be joyful in hope and patient in affliction (Rom. 12:12 niv). When we quietly endure our suffering, we find favor with the Lord (1 Pet. 2:20).

The Holy Spirit is conforming us to Christ’s image. As we cooperate with Him, He will develop in us the ability to persevere—without becoming agitated—when waiting or provoked. A calm demeanor in times of delay or adversity can be a powerful witness to the transforming work of God.

For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.

Used with permission from In Touch Ministries, Inc. © 2009 All Rights Reserved.