Do you ever battle that giant? I do, often I’m afraid.
It usually arises when I’m in the middle of a project and a child that I thought would be busy with schoolwork for awhile interrupts me and asks for help. Maybe it comes to call when I’m in a hurry and can’t get other family members to move at my speed. Other times it’s when I feel that the cashier at the grocery store is spending too much time talking to the customers when she needs to be swiping the groceries.
Lately I’ve recognized how often I’m impatient and I want to find a way to fight against it. In Colossians 1:10-11, I found the following words: “That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing…strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;”
This passage helps me in several ways.
- It reminds me that my impatience is not pleasing to the Lord. After all, longsuffering is listed as a fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23. If I’m not producing that fruit, I’m displaying the fruit of the flesh.
- It is His power that allows me to win the battle over impatience. I know all too well that I can’t overcome impatience in my own flesh; my selfishness is a natural reaction.
- My attitude counts. I need to not only overcome my impatient reaction, but also respond with joy. Sometimes I can control my outward response, but inwardly I’m still frustrated. How wonderful it would be if I could truly be patient on the inside when interruptions or delays arise.