We live in an instant society. It seems like an already fast-paced world is getting faster and faster by the day. Boredom with just about everything is on the rise. If we have to wait for anything, it’s just not worth it. In such a world, patience is a much needed virtue.
In our spiritual lives, patience is even more important. The reality for all of us is that spiritual maturity and transformation takes time. It’s a process. By just adding (boiling) water you can make instant oatmeal, but in the life of the Christian it isn’t so simple. Some have mistakenly assumed that after rising from the waters of baptism and beginning their new life in Christ everything will be perfect and there won’t be any hiccups along the way. Eventually reality comes along and blows this misunderstanding to shreds. It becomes easy to lose patience with others, and especially ourselves. Becoming conformed to the image of Christ is a long and slow process for the most diligent follower of Jesus. For a slow learner like me, it has at times proven to be especially frustrating.
But thankfully Jesus is especially patient. He spent three years with 12 knucklehead disciples and not once did he give up on them. Sure, he occasionally let them know that he was frustrated with their lack of understanding, but he continued to touch their lives until his teaching sunk in. We can be sure that though we so often get it wrong, as long as we continue to stumble and crawl behind our master we will eventually begin to resemble the one we follow. Patience is a virtue and thankfully Jesus has plenty of it! - Shay