The Wonder of God’s Patience

There are times when I marvel at the patience of God. When I think of how He puts up with me and how we sometimes interact with one another. We can be adults and yet act like little children, demanding from others, what we fail to do ourselves. We expect others to understand our points of view but fail to try to understand theirs. Or, sometimes, because we do not get what we think we want, we stomp our little feet, demanding that God comply with our wishes, or else.

We want God to react on our terms, in accordance with our ability to see and understand and yet we know, or we should know, that God doesn’t work that way. God does not react according to our terms or our rules, His ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not our thoughts. And I for one am glad of that, because quite candidly, my track record isn’t really all that great.

Have you ever stopped to really think and consider how God’s Word says that we are to treat one another? Let’s take a look. Grab a coffee, this list is actually short (abbreviated from what is available) and any emphasis provided is mine. And the thought crosses my mind, how many times do we all violate God’s guidance, how many times do we allow and foster our own desires and goals and put God’s guidance to the wayside?

Ephesians 4:32 ESV
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Ephesians 4:29-31 ESV
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice

John 15:12 ESV
This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.

1 JOHN 4:20-21 ESV
If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.

John 14:15 ESV
If you love me, you will keep my commandments.


ROMANS 12:10 ESV
Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.

ROMANS 15:1-2 ESV
We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up.

1 PETER 3:8-12 ESV
Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing. For “Whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit; let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.

Philippians 2:4 ESV
Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.


Colossians 3:12-14 ESV
Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.

1 Timothy 5:1-2 ESV
Do not rebuke an older man but encourage him as you would a father, younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, younger women as sisters, in all purity.


Romans 12:18 ESV
If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.


Philippians 2:3 ESV
Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.


Matthew 7:3-5 ESV
Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.


Ephesians 4:2 ESV
With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,

James 1:19 ESV
Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;

1 John 4:19 ESV
We love because he first loved us.

1 Thessalonians 5:11 ESV
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

Galatians 5:26 ESV
Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

Luke 17:3-4 ESV
Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.


Hebrews 12:14-15 ESV
Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled;

Matthew 5:9 ESV
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

Matthew 18:15 ESV
If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.

Luke 6:27-36 ESV
But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. To one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also, and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic either. Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back. And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them. …

Titus 2:7 ESV
Show yourself in all respects to be a model of good works, and in your teaching show integrity, dignity,


Galatians 5:14-15 ESV
For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.


1 Corinthians 13:4 ESV
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant

Ephesians 4:1-3 ESV
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Summary:
There are many more Scripture verses that God has given us than this small sample I have given. But what do we do? We don’t take them to heart when we write to others, we don’t take them to heart when words come out of our mouths and we don’t consider them when others slander us or assume our intent, without verifying. Assumptions are made and ridicule is delivered. Discussion slides from the issue being discussed to assumed personal shortfalls. And what do we do? We respond, individually, from within ourselves. And therein lies the problem. 

Can you imagine if we really took to heart all of the above admonishments? Would we have a lot less to say? Would we rephrase that written statement? Would we consider the understanding of others, along with our own, before we state what we think that we see? Would we be quicker to apologize when we have assumed unjustly? Would we acknowledge our own shortfalls and consider them when identifying the shortfalls of others?
 
I do marvel at God’s patience and I do see us so often, as acting like little children, without considering and making use of the wisdom that God has given us. When God’s Word says that there is none that seeks God’s righteousness (Romans 3:10-11), I believe Him. And then we have Romans 3:22-26 which reads:
 
but it is the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus, whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in God’s merciful restraint He let the sins previously committed go unpunished; for the demonstration, that is, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.”
 
His righteousness, that is not ours, it is the righteousness we have in Christ, and we forget that, especially in our dealings with others, and especially those within the family of faith.
 
I believe that we grieve the Holy Spirit when we forsake His guidance, I believe that we diminish the glory of Jesus when we demean and ridicule one another. Because we forget from where we receive our righteousness. 
 
So I do marvel at God’s patience.
 
Something to think about.
 
Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings.
 
 

24 comments

      • I hope you know I genuinely consider different point of views. I have really struggled lately in that I care about people. I work very hard and am very mindful that there is a person who is both reading my posts and receiving my comments. I would love to have a cup of tea with you over FaceTime, Skype, zoom and discuss things. Tone is mighty hard to discern over the internet, especially when you’ve never heard that person speak before! I did my masters degree online and let me tell you, you learn a lot about people doing seminary online! Blessed day to you as well!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I used to do IT (Information Technology) instruction for companies over the Internet so I do know exactly what you mean, nothing beats face to face. I actually loved teaching in from of a class of students. Even had a chance to crack some of my jokes. Maybe we can arrange a time online later on, I usually don’t do on lines with women because of consideration for my wife, which I am sure you can understand. Leave that one with me. Gotta run and do some errands so rest assured, you have securely snuck a place into my heart. I am very thankful that our paths have crossed. Love in Christ – Bruce

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  1. Thanks, Bruce. Our example is always Jesus Christ Who was/is full of grace and truth. I’m a doctrine guy so I tend to lean toward the truth side and am critical of my grace brothers and sisters who are sometimes all too ready to let in any ol’ false teacher through the front door who names Christ as Lord.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Gary, I was telling David that I probably should get some of those verses tattooed on the back of my hands so I don’t forget them. Crazy how they fly out the window when conflict appears. Just gotta try harder. Blessings Gary!

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  2. Howdy Bruce, thanks for taking the time to share this important stuff!

    I was only talking with a friend about this stuff last night. I think when the subject often comes up its kinda glazed over and not considered deeply enough.

    Loving others as we have been loved, showing the same amount of grace we have received..a life long learning that needs to be taught and practiced.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Evad, yes indeed, some days it is relatively easy and some days it is hard. Nevertheless the response Jesus asks of us is always the same and that is where the rubber hits the road. When you hit the opposition or the ridicule is where the “I” in us wants to fight back and pride raises its head. Yet the peace, the real inner peace, only comes with trusting and obeying Jesus and that does take time to learn. And of course, God’s grace, because obeying Him brings a whole different possibility for an outcome, than the one we would pursue on our own, which is really what it is all about. I think that most times it takes so long because we are just so slow in learning. Learning to look beyond ourselves and trusting in Him. And like I have said, I marvel at His patience. My our gracious Lord bless you richly. Love in Christ – Bruce

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  3. Just the one commandment to love our enemies is one that seems to have been tossed to the wind these days. It seems God’s people are missing a golden opportunity to stand out from the world, but here we are lashing out along with everyone else. Just today I read a “comment” from one calling himself a Christian – ” I hope they rot in hell.” Well, “they” will without the grace of God, just as WE would have, if He had not saved us. The least we could do is obey Him and pray for the lost.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Annie, I know, I’ve seen it too. One of the statements I frequently see is “I love Jesus but . . .” On another note, it’s nice to see you again, haven’t seen you for a while! God’s blessings to you and yours!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Bruce, I post every Friday. If you haven’t seen my stuff lately, you might check your spam folder. I have been reading your posts and usually responding. I hope you have seen my comments.
        Blessings to you and yours, too. 👍

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      • I think I’ve gotten most of them, for some reason I thought you posted more often. Not to worry, I’m thinking my grey cells are depleting faster than I thought! Blessings! 🙂

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  4. I’ve discovered that I am very loving and kind (acting just like a Christian should) when out of nowhere somebody “makes” me explode (totally lose it)! No one can really make me do anything, of course, but anger can pop out sometimes when I least expect it! I found this to be especially true when I taught at the Junior High! We certainly need to be prayed up and studying our Bible daily, and asking God to help us walk in love every day. Great post Bruce! Blessings!

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