Contentment, patience, perseverance, and self-control are words that I have to continue to remind myself of throughout life. Understanding what the meaning of contentment is now, (see "God has a plan for our lives and we don't want to miss it" blog) I still have to constantly remind myself to practice each of these heavy words. My husband asked me an interesting question the other day. He said, "Would you say that right now, this is the easiest my life will ever be?" He went on to say that as life goes on, we will gain more responsibility and be more aware of reality. This question sat with me for awhile. I started to think about how I am constantly excited about the next thing and always looking forward to what's to come. But this question allowed me to be more aware of reality.
When I think of patience, my mind goes towards waiting for something that I am very excited about; jumping to the next season of life, getting through a current season, getting a new house, going on a long awaited vacation, or even the arrival of a new family member (my first niece/nephew is due next week!!!)
I never have a hard time being patient for what I don't want to come. Usually those events can take as long as they want. When being impatient gets in the way of our current life, we are robbing ourselves of the gift God has given us, which is the beautiful life we have. What if we changed our hearts to focus on who God called us to be, instead of where God called us to be?
"Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience." - Colossians 3:12
"So Whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." - 1 Corinthians 10:31
God calls us to glorify Him. If we choose to live each day with this as our main focus, I have a feeling my focus on being patient will turn into being focused on glorifying the Lord. While reading through Romans 8, I noticed that waiting is exemplified by a pregnant woman. At times, people think being patient often means they are breaking down and becoming weak because they have to wait, when all the while it is doing the complete opposite.
"All around us we observe a pregnant creation. The difficult times of pain throughout the world are simply birth pangs. But it's not only around us; it's within us. The Spirit of God is arousing us within. These sterile and barren bodies of ours are yearning for full deliverance. That is why waiting does not diminish us, any more than waiting diminishes a pregnant mother. We are enlarged in waiting. We, of course, don't see what is enlarging us. But the longer we wait, the larger we become, and the more joyful our expectancy. Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God's spirit is right alongside helping us along." - Romans 8:22-26
I love how the message words these verses. It allows my heart to be filled knowing that waiting allows us to grow and mature. I have recently finished a study by Beth Moore that focuses on the power of prayer. Within this time of waiting and being patient, prayer is our most powerful tool. God wants us to have a relationship with him. He wants us to "Take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ" (2 Corinthians 10:5) Having that relationship with Him will allow us to know and glorify Him.
Agree to take the challenge this week. Enjoy God's presence and know that within the waiting, you are growing and mature.
When you find yourself being impatient or longing to be somewhere you are not ask, yourself the following questions:
Is my heart focused on Christ?
Am I glorifying God?
Pray on the following scripture: