The Waiting is the Hardest Part(?)
From James 5: 7 Be patient, therefore, beloved, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious crop from the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. 8 You also must be patient. Strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is near. 9 Beloved, do not grumble against one another, so that you may not be judged. See, the Judge is standing at the doors! 10 As an example of suffering and patience, beloved, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord.
I'm not a patient grower or farmer. I try to be a patient parent, thanks to the help of my wife. The picture for today is a very special ornament for us as we hung it on our tree in 1980 as our first baby celebrated her first Christmas with us. We chose the ornament because it held several items on it that represented our hope in our baby and what she might become. But it also represented something more; she was a gift from God for us to enjoy and enjoy her we did, and do. The same holds true for the additional three precious gifts that God blessed us with and from whom we have been blessed four times again with our grand babies.
Advent reminds us that patience is important in so many things and goes further than impatience. I keep always in my mind the image of the most patient man I knew from television, Rev. Fred Rogers. I have to admits as our babies started watching PBS I enjoyed watching Mr. Rogers along with them. And it was not too many years ago, a prank show had him as one of several celebrities pranked by this group. And I have shared the story before because it speaks of great patience. The segment Mr. Rogers was in was a group of television personalities and critics who were told by a bell person in a hotel that their televisions were not working and they could provide a small black and white portable on which to watch shows. All went ballistic. Mr. Rogers kept saying, "That's okay. That's fine," and never showed a hint of impatience. I was impressed and blessed. My heart was strengthened as James says it should be by patience. I have yet a long way to go, but I pray for patience as I await and work in what God has shared with me to do.
James knew that the Lord would return and encouraged many to stay patient but faithful and fruitfulness. Patience is not a static thing nor one that we gain most from just sitting; it is part of our daily work towards perfection in our lives and hearts. "Get up and go" God invites and challenges so many. May we be among those who say, "Here I am, I'm going!"
PRAYER: Lord of Love, share with us the precious gift of patience in all things. Strengthen our hearts and let us bless others as we work together to bring about the presence and power of Your kingdom. This we pray in Jesus our Lord, amen.
Have a great and blessed day in the Lord!