Isn’t it always difficult to wait for summer to finally roll around each year? As the fun and excitement of Kamp draws closer, the days in the countdown seem to feel longer! And while we love for you to be excited about the summer ahead, today’s blog features the Fruit of the Spirit that is all about waiting: patience.
At Kanakuk, Kampers are taught to live out I’m Third– to put God first, others second and ourselves third. Scripture tells us that when we put God first in every aspect of our lives, then we will produce fruit as our character reflects the Holy Spirit at work within us. Patience is one of those fruits!
Galatians 5:22-23 tells us, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”
The dictionary defines patience as “the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like,” and a “quiet, steady perseverance, even-tempered care or diligence.” Considering this, patience seems like it’s all about enduring unpleasant circumstances or waiting out something unfortunate until it gets better.
However, the Bible has a deeper explanation about patience and what it means for Christians.
First, patience is a virtue that is a product of self-control and exhibits Godliness. 2 Peter 1:6 says, “Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge, and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness.” Being patient is about perseverance, which can take many forms: waiting for the answer to a prayer; following the Lord’s direction despite the uncertainty of the future; or even withholding a hateful remark toward someone you think deserves revenge. Being patient and persevering mirrors the image of the Lord, who is patient always.
Secondly, being patient in hard times helps us grow as Christians. Isaiah 40:31 says, “Yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.” It’s not easy to be patient and wait faithfully for God to work his will in our lives, especially when our digital world is built upon the idea of immediacy and things happening now. But the Lord keeps his promises, and He never leaves us. Being patient during life’s valleys make the mountaintops much more glorious.
Lastly and simply, a patient spirit pleases the Lord. In Ecclesiastes 7:8, the Bible says, “the end of a matter is better than its beginning; patience of spirit is better than haughtiness of spirit.” Being slow to act and quick to turn to the Lord for guidance shows a Christian’s faithfulness, which pleases our heavenly Father. Practice patience daily, in the small decisions and big ones!