What is the measure of Patience and Impatience? Patience can be defined as “a self-discipline or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay, pain, or irritation.”
Patience is part of the Fruit of the Spirit, the outcome of the Holy Spirit being given complete access to our life (Galatians 5:22, Patience is also translated as “longsuffering” or “forbearance”). Patience is the result of a close working partnership between us and the Holy Spirit in the development of a self-disciplined skill. The Holy Spirit greatly increases our capacity for Patience (and that part could possibly be considered mystical), but the end result is a practical outcome from a practical partnership.
“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret, it leads only to evil. For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who wait on the Lord will inherit the land.”
~ Psalm 37:7-9
Patience and Impatience are not measured by outward actions only, but rather by the willingness and the effort by the person to be genuinely Christ-like inwardly and outwardly, intellectually and emotionally. A Patient person is not one who silences their tongue outwardly and yet screams inwardly without restraint, or mutters under their breath while their heart rages with irritation.
Forgiveness [of the cause of the irritation or the delay] is a powerful progenitor of the fruit of Patience, and Unforgiveness perpetuates Impatience. Patience begets more Patience, while Impatience fuels the fires of Impatience.
Patience is a decisive, willful, and capable act of the whole person, hence the commands of God to: “Be still;” “wait patiently;” “do not fret;” “refrain from anger;” “turn from wrath;” and “wait on the Lord.” God’s commands mean that We Can!
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