Embracing Patience

18 06 2013

patience“Don’t pray for patience. If you do…God will send trials your way.” I have heard this mentioned so many times that I’ve lost count. And every time I hear it I sort of chuckle. Because God is going to send trials into our life. It’s just a part of life with God. It’s how we deal with the impending trials that make us or break us.

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. (James 1:2-4 — NIV)” In the King James Version the word patience is used. Actually they are interchangeable here. The word from which we get patience or perseverance means “a patient enduring, sustaining, perseverance.” And isn’t this what we really want? We want to persevere…to go through it and come out shining for His glory on the other side. The problem comes when we want to skip the lessons and go straight to the blessing.

Recently my daughter went on a summer field trip. It was to a pottery shop. It’s a place where they get to choose a particular item and paint and decorate it. Then the shop finishes the item and you get it back in a few days (about 2 weeks). The finishing process is like any other pottery item. It has to be fired. Heat is applied so that the item is strengthened for use. Without this process finishing the item would be so fragile that it couldn’t be used. If we skip the finishing process we will be missing important things in our lives that strengthen and sustain us for God’s use.

nopain“But they’re so hard to take.” I agree. It’s never easy to go through the trials. Pain hurts. But while we have to go through them…we’re never alone in the midst of them. God promises that He will walk through them with us. I read a story one day that may illustrate this a little better…

“Some time ago, a few ladies met in a certain city to study the scriptures. While reading the third chapter of Malachi, they came upon a remarkable expression in the third verse:

‘And He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver (Malachi 3:3)’

One lady proposed to visit a silversmith, and report to them on what he said about the subject. She went accordingly, and without telling the object of her errand, begged the silversmith to tell her about the process of refining silver. After he had fully described it to her, she asked, ‘But Sir, do you sit while the work of refining is going on?’

‘Oh, yes madam,’ replied the silversmith; ‘I must sit with my eyes steadily fixed on the furnace, for if the time necessary for refining be exceeded in the slightest degree, the silver will be injured.’

The lady at once saw the beauty, and comfort too, of the expression, ‘He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver.’ God sees it needful to put His children into a furnace; His eye is steadily intent on the work of purifying, and His wisdom and love are both engaged in the best manner for us. Our trials do not come at random, and He will not let us be tested beyond what we can endure.

Before she left, the lady asked one final question, ‘When do you know the process is complete?’

‘Why, that is quite simple,’ replied the silversmith. ‘When I can see my own image in the silver, the refining process is finished.'”

While it’s tempting to avoid the trials…doing so will only produce a life that is fragile and unfit for use. But if we embrace the trials that come our way we will be “…mature and complete, not lacking anything.” In other words — a life that reflects the character of God.

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One response

18 06 2013
oamodu

Reblogged this on Amodu Oluwaseun Blog.

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