Galatians 5:22, 23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.”
What is patience?
Patience is described in the dictionary as the “capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.” In other words, patience is not only about going through the unpleasant situation or experiencing delays but it is also about maintaining joy through it. This is where things get tricky because many can understand accepting and even tolerating hardship but many will draw the line at maintaining joy or not having the opportunity to at least complain about it. Patience is very important for every believer to have. Patience is that gift or fruit that keeps giving. In other word patience will does a lot for a believer; patience what helps us to endure and build character. Patience is what will help a believer to mature and strengthen us spiritually as they wait on the promises of God. Patience cannot be overestimated and it is important for a believer to understand what it means to be patient.
You need to have the Holy Spirit to have the fruit of patience
A believer needs patience in their daily walk because the Christian race is one that is paved with hardship and tribulations many of the times. It will be impossible to continue to maintain ones patience without Joy. This is because once a person has lost their joy they will lose their will to endure and become over whelmed and lose hope. This is why the power of the Holy Spirit is available to us to help us to have patience with joy “May you be strengthened with all power; according to His glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy…” This is good news as no believer ever needs to try to produce patience in their own strength. God is able to help us experience patience in whatever situation we are facing once we are willing to submit to the power and workings of God through the Holy Spirit that is in us.
Patience helps reach maturity
Patience performs a (perfecting or maturing) work in us as believers. Patience is one of the ways God build us up into strong and matured believers. Every believer needs to mature because the when we become mature, then we lack nothing. The road to maturity however is a process, very much like what we go through to become matured in life in general. It requires having to go through a process that culminate together to produce maturity. This will not happen overnight but will require patiently learning through many of life experiences.
Patience helps us to endure
Endurance is not something that will come immediately. Look at a long distance runner for instance, they have to train to be able to endure running for several minutes or even hours without giving up. This is not something that everyone can achieve, it is not even something every athlete can achieve. If you ask a long distance runner how they were able to endure, one of the first things they will mention is patience. It is no wonder the believer is compared to a runner and the Christian walk is described as a race; every believer needs patience to endure the race. Jesus endured and so does every believer that expects to receive the hope that is set before us all. Patience not only helps us to grow and mature in our walk as believers but it is also patience that helps us to endure till we receive God’s promise to us. We are encouraged to look to Jesus and endure with patience like He did. This is because Jesus also faced trials and very unpleasant situations but He always endured and stayed patient. So also must we “…but the one who endures to the end will be saved…”
Patience is necessary for every believer however there are also many things that will prevent patience from being produced in us. These patience destroyers are dangerous and can cause us to lose God’s promises for us. This is why it is important to know these things so that we can avoid them.
Anxiety destroys patience
Anxiety works in opposition with joy when it comes to patience. Anxiety by definition involves frustration and anger with a lot of nervousness and fear. If you think back to all the times you have ever had to be patient about anything, chances are that the moment you develop any anxiety over the situation you began to find it hard to also stay patient and this is because patience will not be able to thrive with anxiety.
Sin destroys patience
Another thing that will destroy patience is sin; sin is described in the bible as an entangler “… let us throws off everything that hinders and the sins that so easily entangle…” Sin will entangle and weigh one down so that they are not able to stay patient this is because sin does not only affect the physical but it also affects the mind causing the mind to be overcome. Bottom line is that if we dabble in unconfessed sin, our patience will be affected.
The Holy Spirit is our help and He will produce the fruit of patience in us as we continue to endure divers situations. We have Jesus as our example to emulate when we are discouraged and we must let go of everything that will destroy patience in us
James 1:2-4 “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”
Colossians 1: 11,12 “May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.”
1 Corinthians 9:25 “All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize.”
Hebrew 12:1 “Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,”
Temitope Talabi is a founding member of The Trent Voices currently reside in Austin, TX. She graduated with a PharmD from Texas Southern University in Houston, TX. She works as a community pharmacist and spends her spare time writing to build and encourage others through the word of God. Temitope is also currently working on a series of self-help books created to empower people to take charge of their health and wellness, the first of which is scheduled to be released early next year.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.