Enjoy Life, Enjoy God

Dale Patterson


March 29, 2010

My wife has harassed her household for years with a proverb from her growing up: "Patience is a tree whose root is bitter, but whose fruit is very sweet." "Yeah, yeah," our kids with grumble.

Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord's coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm...
---James 5:7,8 TNIV

My family grumbled at my wife's proverb because it spoke a terrible word, one of the worst in the language: PATIENCE. As James concludes his letter, an epistle rich with relevant instruction and application, some of it stomping on our toes, he holds the terrible word for nearly the last counsel: "Be patient." Why do we bristle at such wisdom, truth and counsel? Most of us grumble at the word because we hate to be patient. Yet James tells us that a key facet of discipleship is patience. Think it might be the truth?

One of my friends taught me years ago: "God never shows up too early, but God never shows up too late." Maybe that's another way of hope and help to embrace the terrible word James reiterates: Be patient.

Dale Patterson