Patience is a reflection of the Character of God.
God is patient. Why? Well, because God is in control and He knows how the story ends. Because of Jesus’ sacrifice, we know how the story ends, too. Because of Jesus, WE CAN WAIT. We can trust that God is in control. We can have hope that things will work out in the end. And we can be patient because we know all that God has done.
For our first week focused on patience, we look to 1 Samuel 1:6–2:1 where we discover the story of Hannah. She had waited years for a child. Rather than become frustrated and angry toward God, she prays and tells Him all about it. When God answers her prayer, she gives her son back to God. He honored her waiting and blessed her with even more children. Bottom Line: When you think you can’t wait, talk to God about it. It’s important for us all to remember that talking to God about waiting will help us stay patient through whatever circumstance we might face. He may not change our circumstance, but He’ll give the strength to keep waiting well.
There’s an important patience principle King Solomon wrote in Proverbs 14:29. Anyone who is patient has great understanding. But anyone who gets angry quickly shows how foolish they are (NIrV). How we respond to waiting shows others our character. Getting frustrated and angry doesn’t make the wait any less; it just makes us look foolish. Bottom Line: When you think you can’t wait, keep your cool. Sometimes when you’re waiting, becoming angry and frustrated with others is the first thing that pops into our minds. But when it comes to waiting, often there’s very little we can do to make the wait any less. While you’re waiting, don’t make yourself look foolish by taking it out on the people around you.
In week four of April, we head to Exodus 32:1–35 where we find the Israelites at the foot of Mount Sinai. Instead of obeying God and waiting for Moses to come down off the mountain, the entire nation of Israel grew impatient. They built a golden calf and began to worship it instead of worshiping God. Their lack of patience had some severe consequences. Bottom Line: When you think you can’t wait, think about what’s true. It’s easier to wait when you remember all the times God has helped you before. You can trust Him, knowing that He’ll help you wait.
We’ll finish out the month with one of the best examples of what happens when you’re not patient; you lose something of value. In Genesis 25:24-34, we discover the story of Esau sacrificing his birthright for a bowl of stew. Because Esau was impatient, he lost something he could never get back. Bottom Line: When you think you can’t wait, think twice. Don’t let your lack of patience cause you to make a decision you’ll regret. Think twice about what really matters. Ask God to help you wait patiently for what matters most.