DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: If I had to make a list of my faults, the first thing on the list would have to be impatience. I wish I was a more patient person, but Im afraid it just isnt in me to be that way. Does the Bible say anything about this? D.L.
By BILLY GRAHAM
Tribune Media Services
DEAR D.L.: Yes, the Bible certainly talks about impatience and the bad things it can bring into our lives just as it talks about patience and its benefits. The Bible says, Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly (Proverbs 14:29).
Why is impatience harmful? First of all, it harms us, physically, emotionally and spiritually. But it also harms our relationship with others. Impatience easily turns into anger or even violence, and these are the opposite of Gods plan for us. The Bible says, But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).
Have you ever asked yourself when youre most likely to become impatient? Its probably when something happens that delays you or changes your plans, and over which you have no control. But if you cant do anything about it, why get upset? I know thats easier said than done, but simply realizing that you cant change the situation may help you relax and accept it. The Bible says, A persons wisdom yields patience (Proverbs 19:11).
The key, however, is to realize that patience true, lasting patience isnt something we can develop on our own. Instead, its a gift from God, given to us by the Holy Spirit. Have you ever confessed your impatient spirit to God, and asked him to make you a more patient person? He will, as you yield your life and your emotions to Christ, and then seek to become more like him.
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