An online magazine for pastors and church leaders.

Take a little break these days in December and re-center yourself with these devotions from the Sunday| Mag contributors.

?Jennifer, you have to learn to be more patient.?

My dad?s words still ring in my ears. The circumstances were pretty ordinary. My dad, my sister, and I were in his truck driving the familiar 45-mile stretch of highway between my parents? homes. As a divorced family we shuffled back and forth every other weekend. It was our routine and I knew it well, but it didn?t mean that I liked it. I?m sure I was complaining about how long it was taking, something my little sister was doing to annoy me, and whatever else was irritating me that day. The circumstances evade me, but his words hit deep. I was impatient even as an eight year old!

Dad wisely saw something in my character that day several decades ago and it still troubles me.

At times I?ve been proud of my impatience. It fuels productivity and has led to some great achievements, but impatience has also left me perpetually dissatisfied, often frustrated, and intolerant of others who don?t share my sense of urgency.

But impatience is not a virtue.[quote]Impatience is not a virtue.[/quote]

Scripture tells us:

  • ?Love is patient?? 1 Corinthians 13:4
  • ?The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience?? Galatians 5:22
  • ?Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.??Proverbs 14:29

Patience is not a quality that is simply nice to have. It?s part of our responsibility as Christ-followers. It?s a virtue we must strive to develop.[quote]Patience is not a quality that is simply nice to have. It?s part of our responsibility as Christ-followers.[/quote]

So in those moments when you feel impatience growing:

  • Make sure you?ve done what you can do. Impatience often comes when we?re waiting on others (including God). If you?ve done all you can do, it?s time to be patient and wait.
  • Don?t control or manipulate the situation.
  • Listen well. Often times there is something we need to learn in the waiting.

Where do you need to be more patient? Who or what triggers impatience in you? How can you make patience a greater priority in your life and leadership?

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