From time to time, we all encounter frustrating people. From time to time, we too, are frustrating to people. Sometimes our children frustrate us, whether they are young or grown; Sometimes we frustrate our children; We might become frustrated with other drivers; the list could go on and on. We might even feel like lashing out, but God wants us to be patient with each other. 1Thessalonians 5:14 tells us to be patient with “Everyone”. I agree, this is not always an easy bill to fill. That’s why we need God’s help.
Patience is one of the products of the Fruit of the Holy Spirit. (Galatians 5:22) I have heard people say they can live a Christian life without being filled with the Holy Spirit. Well, I can say from experience, it’s not always easy to live a Christian life, even when we are filled with the Holy Spirit, because there is always a war going on between the flesh and Spirit. We need the power of the Holy Spirit to give us the strength to resist the devil. I would encourage anyone who’s trying to live a Christian life, to make sure to pull off YOUR righteousness and put on the righteousness of God. 2Corinthians 5:21 tells us, “God made Jesus, who had no sin - to become sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” This includes receiving the Spirit of God to live in us. Jesus told His disciples to go to Jerusalem and wait to be filled with the Holy Spirit, before going forth to witness on His behalf.
With that being said, please know that genuine Christians can be patient, because patience is one of the products of the Fruit of the (Holy) Spirit. There are so many angry people today. Even in our small towns and cities, an alarming number of people are killing each other. I remember the time when people would fight when they became angry with each other. People don’t have fist fights anymore; they just kill each other. As a people, we need to develop more patience. The scripture has a number of things to say about Christians developing patience. Each circumstance that brings us stress and frustration can be used to develop our patience.
First of all, what is patience? Webster’s Dictionary defines patience as, “Being able to endure afflictions, pain, toil, calamity, provocation or other evils, with a calm, unruffled temper; endurance without murmuring or fretfulness.” Patience is also defined as “perseverance; constancy in labor or exertion” and “the quality of bearing offenses and injuries without anger or revenge.” We all know, being patient isn’t easy, however with the Holy Spirit living in us, we CAN develop patience, as the Lord requires. I would like to share several things that might help us to develop patience.
1. Work with God, through the Holy Spirit. The scripture tells us to walk by the Spirit and we will not obey the desires of the flesh. When we find ourselves becoming impatient, we must remind ourselves that the Holy Spirit lives in us and desires to help us resist. To walk in the Spirit means to live according to the Word of God. The Holy Spirit will always nudge us, in our mind, when a desire is not of God, it’s at that time, we must yield to His voice and obey His leading.
2. When we recognize that we are becoming impatient, we should correct ourselves immediately. We can remind ourselves that we have the God of patience living within us. We can ask the Holy Spirit to give us supernatural anointing to operate in His Spirit of patience.
3. Above all, let us allow love to rule our actions. The Bible says, “love is patient”.
The Love I am speaking of is Agape’ Love. Not the kind of love that we can claim to have for someone until they do something we dislike. This Love comes from God, produced in us by the Holy Spirit. Agape Love isn’t born just out of our emotions, feelings, familiarity, or attraction. Agape love is born IN us when the Holy Spirit lives in us. Agape love is the love that makes us love other people as we love ourselves. This love is concerned about the well-being of others, without expecting anything in return. This is the love that will let the world know that we are children of God. This love is unselfish, sacrificial, and willing to go the extra mile for anyone in need. This love will help us seek to understand others, before insisting that they understand us.
These suggestions are not an exhausted list; however they can definitely help us to develop patience.