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Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Patience: God's Grace to Suffer Long


Life is chalk-full of conflicts. It is unrealistic, unhealthy, and spiritually naive to live life expecting everything to fall into place just for you. Life doesn't get out of the way simply because we become Christians. The sooner we accept this, the sooner we can begin find patience. The Apostle Paul gives us some guidance here, in the book of Hebrews. 




Five great questions of life: Life * Love * Learning * Labor * Leadership

Life: What's My Spiritual Center?

Patience: God's Grace to Suffer Long

By Evan Nehring




And then it’s our job to be imitators of God in the area of patience:
My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. (James 1:19-20)




Life is chalk-full of conflicts. It is unrealistic, unhealthy, and spiritually naive to live life expecting everything to fall into place just for you. Life doesn't get out of the way simply because we become Christians. The sooner we accept this, the sooner we can begin find patience. The Apostle Paul gives us some guidance here, in the book of Hebrews.


How to Suffer Long, Hebrews 12:1-2

“Since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses”
This is one of the reasons given for patiently enduring. I won’t minimize what you’re dealing with, but you've got excellent company in this crowd of believers over the centuries. They abandoned great riches to follow God’s plans. They endured slaughter of their people. You can be a part of the great cloud of witnesses! We’ll be more patient if we know we are not alone.

“Throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles”
Get rid of what saps your energy, steals your time, distracts you, and blocks your relationship with God. If you want to be more patient, get focused on what God has called you to do. With God’s help, you can be released from things that are tying you up in knots!

“Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us”
Run the race! Get focused and go for it! Did you realize that impatience is laziness? Oswald Chambers said Jesus was “never hasting and never resting.” Jesus was never in too much of a hurry to help people, but he paced himself like a marathon runner and kept moving. Part of patience is having urgency about what’s truly important.

Photo Credit: By Yftaheco (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

“Fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith”
WWJD! Make your life decisions the way you feel Jesus would have you do it! After a while your natural reactions and even your first thoughts will start to be more Jesus-like. Be Jesus to your world.

“for the joy set before him [Jesus] endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
Don’t forget about what’s ahead! Students, that summer vacation is just one short winter away! Employees, hang in there and work hard. That promotion will come. Employers, continue to train and encourage and that productivity will rise. We never will exactly arrive, here on earth, so we better find joy in the journey!

If you can always give the situation what it needs, instead of uncorking because you need, you’re a very patient person. Take a moment and pause before you respond. If you can’t change things, don’t shake your fist at the sky. Trust in God and make the best of what you have. 


Comments Are Always Welcome...

I know God's Word helps me when my anger gets up. How about you?
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8 comments:

  1. I was very up set until I read this and I wanted to explane to you what I felt . My brother inlaw and his wife came to visit . I worked hard to get a room sat up for them . we didn't have the money yet I bought a bed for our spare room. My husband and I did everything to make this room very nice for them , Yet they made comments about the size of the bed and how hard it was. Maybe it would of been best to set them up in a motel somewhere, We just wanted to spend time with family. I stood on my feet long time to make a beautiful teasty meal they knew It was going to be ready when they got here yet they stopped to eat along the way before they got here. I had the meal ready on the table and ready to eat. they got to our house and said they all ready ate . I put everything away and was so hurt that they were so rude. I did not say a word. Then as we sat in the living room they were talking down the church and I said everyone has a right to think what they wish to , I was not saying a thing to them until the started saying things about Jesus I just said it is late we need to go to bed. I cooked a nice meal, spent money we didnot have so they would have a nice room to sleep in , and I just turned the other chick when they said negitive things about Jesus. I thought tomorrow is an other day maybe it will be better. Nick and I are both old and worn out and we both have illnesses that keep us from doing a lot. We do what we can. that morning she said you can do what ever your mind tells you what you can do and you choose not to do anything that is helpfull to your health. I work hard to do all I can do, and and even push beyond that Yet they seem to think our accadent and body damage is a put on and we just can't do as much as they can, and they choose to tell us we are just lazy . this is not the case. I am not that kind of person . My feelings were hurt so bad yet I kept doing all I could do to be a good host. Not everyone understand and nor wants to. I just think when you go into someones home and they go out of there way to make then comfortable they should show respect for the host. I was so hurt until I read what you wrote and it made me feel good to do it Gods way. Thank You for writing It really helped me.

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    1. Thanks, Mrs. Nick, for a very encouraging comment. God meets us where we are and makes a difference in our hearts as his presence comes to us through the scriptures. I'm so glad He's made a difference for you today.

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  2. Hey Evan, Love the verse about throwing off what hinders and entangles us. That's been challenging me for years. Each time I get rid of something that steals my time and focus, it's something else. It's not necessarily bad stuff just business. It's a constant balance to keep important stuff first, like God and family. Facebook, t.v., shopping are all things I've wrestled with spending too much time and attention on. I feel like I can hardly find God when I'm so distracted. I'm thankful for great music that helps and I love the times I do take to read my Bible or pray or just lay back and look at the sky in awe of the creator.
    From Heather Block

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  3. Heather, I agree that good things can get out of balance. Seems like that's where much of our stress/impatience comes from: trying to maintain balance. Being "imbalanced" isn't a great option. I love how you talk about quiet time, creation and music can help you refocus.

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  4. Hey Evan.This has just come when am undergoing a process of getting closer to God spiritually.There's one thing I keep on doing that's not good but for the last two days,av learnt to manage my emotions & that's through the help of God.Am glad I read your post coz now I know my God is lookingout for me n my Patience in Him will pay..God Bless you ...From Deejay Abbas

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    1. Deejay, I'm so glad God's helping you! God really speaks to me through this Hebrews 12 passage. I'm praying for God's continued work in your heart! Evan

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  5. This was a really good post Evan! Lots of amazing lessons in here and much of what I needed to hear to Kick off this New Year.
    I really like what you said here: "Jesus was never in too much of a hurry to help people, but he paced himself like a marathon runner and kept moving." - Beautiful insight!

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    1. Thanks again Melanie. Looking forward to your Crumbs of Purpose posts. Please feel free to post a link here or in another post comment. God bless!

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