"I never like a jail!" a young boy boldly declared, broadcasting his words through a nearby microphone and interrupting Sunday's children sermon. The leader, Lori, did not miss a beat, and said that yes, jails are not a fun place to be.
She turned their attention to her topic - patience - then said how hard it is to wait patiently for something we really want. She used words to paint pictures of the challenge of waiting. Another interruption:
"I never like to wait patiently!" the same little boy exclaimed. He was not a plant in the audience, but his sentiment fed into her message perfectly. Adults nodded in amusement or laughed aloud because he had said what we were thinking: we do not like to wait patiently.
Waiting. We can expect routine waiting throughout the day and week. These times will prove to be mere inconveniences in light of real problems one day. We may even have extreme times of waiting that try our souls, such as:
Psalm 69:3 I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God.So go ahead and speak aloud the words on your heart. Pour out your heart like water before the Lord....Say boldly to the Lord exactly what you are thinking in times of impatience, distress and great anguish. God is big enough to take it. No veil can conceal the condition of our hearts and thoughts before God. Be honest. Wrapping our words in a cloak of acceptability or trying in vain to disguise our true intention is futile. Are we fooling anyone?
And thanks be to God for the witness of scripture that reminds us how to keep our focus when life's frequent interruptions keep jarring us and demanding yet another opportunity to practice patience:
Psalm 40:1 I waited patiently for the LORD; and God inclined unto me, and heard my cry.We do not like to wait patiently, but we will continue to get more chances to practice being patient. I pray these life lessons will drive us to the heart of God as we await God's provision and as we grow in grace. I pray that peace and patience will be among our gifts discovered in the coming year.