Oct 13, 2015

{Day 13}: When Patience Wears Thin

Today's word prompt: PATIENCE

I'll start out with this verse from Galatians 5:22 (NIV):

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, 
peace, patience
goodness, faithfulness."

Sometimes, I wonder why that particular fruit keeps falling off so many times.  I can be so impatient with so many things that I also wonder what happened to the young girl who was like the epitome of patience.  Has her patience finally run out? 

We all want things to work out the way we expect them, no glitches, no setbacks.  But most often, that's not the case.  For there are so many things that are practically beyond our control and I'm sure we've each got a long list of things that stretch us to our limits:

  • Running late for work and you're caught in heavy traffic
  • People who are always late for appointments
  • Being held up in a meeting when you should be off from work already
  • Falling in line and the one in front takes her sweet time to decide what to order
  • Friends who don't keep their promises
  • Kids who wouldn't stay put when you've told them to behave well for just a few minutes
  • Teens who act irresponsibly and have to be told over and over again what to do
  • A friend who always comes up with something to argue about
  • A colleague who keeps telling the same woes every single day

The list could go on and on on... I realize, our impatience often comes from the need to control and have our way with people and with circumstances.  And when that expectation is unmet, we roll our eyes, get angry, snap at someone, start to argue, say hurtful things, start a fight, and so on.

But when the dust settles, we most often regret what we've said or done in our moment of impatience.  Oh, I'd been there.  And I am still a work in progress.  I try to control my response. I hold my tongue when I have nothing good to say.  When it's possible, I take a walk to let off steam. I do my best to calm myself and not be angry. I'd have to be honest, I have many slips along the way.

But what helps me most is when I pray, even just a short prayer.  That helps me keep things in perspective. I ask God to control my nerves, or the anger that rises up in me in certain situations.  I cry out inwardly, for Him to deliver me from my inner beast.  I've always been fearful of that beast when it's unleashed.  So I call on Someone who's strong enough to tame that beast.  

Breathe in...breathe out....and pray....It is my wish that the fruit won't fall off so that others could see the workings of the Spirit in how I live my life and my response to situations.  After all, it's our accountability as Christians.

This is Day 13 of the series
31 Days of Free Writes: A Journey of Faith.
Read the rest of the posts here.

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