Our patience is constantly being tested. Many of us are frustrated with our jobs, kids, relationships, and God because we think that we’ve been patient when we haven’t. I don’t know about you, but patience has always been something that I struggled with, unknowingly. Oftentimes, I entered into relationships with guys that were nowhere near what I wanted or needed, but I thought that if I was patient with them, they would eventually become who I wanted. It wasn’t like I was trying to change any of them, but I thought that if I showed them a love that they had never experienced before, the change would happen on its own. I thought that because I tended to be drawn more to a person’s personality, than their looks, I was being patient. I was patient with these guys in this aspect, but I wasn’t patient with God, or with myself. As a result of not being patient with myself and with God, I always received the short end of the stick.
Often after a breakup, I’d be in another one shortly after. A couple of times, my relationships overlapped because I was over the guy I was with but hadn’t ended the relationship before another guy came into my life. Yup, clear impatience. As I was reflecting on this, I asked myself, why? Why was I so impatient? A few things came to mind. First, I planned to be married with children by the age of 25. My mom and dad were married in their early 20’s, and are still young with now adult children. That’s what I also wanted for myself. I mean who wants to be old raising children? Second, I lost my sense of purpose. When my dream career as a fashion magazine editor, seemed that it would only be that, “a dream,” I settled for jobs that kept me stuck and unfulfilled. This caused me to long for a family desperately. Lastly, when I turned 30 years old, the tick of my biological clock started to sound more like the chime of the Elizabeth Tower in London. My mom would often ask me about relationships and if I was dating. At the time I was dating someone, but it was complicated. Even my younger brother had a kid on the way, and now he has two. It seemed like everything was going against me. I wasn’t where I wanted to be career-wise and all of my relationships were unsuccessful. I was an excellent employee, friend, girlfriend, daughter, and sister, but still wasn’t getting a leg up in life.
My Pastor at the time, often told me to “be still.” I had no idea what that truly meant. Being still in a world that is constantly changing, advancing, and evolving will cause you to be left behind. The microwave culture that we have all become accustomed to, only speaks the language of instantaneous satisfaction. Fame and stardom are being acquired with little to no effort or work. You no longer need real talent because people just want to be entertained. You no longer need morals and standards because we are free to do whatever we want. You no longer need love and patience because it shows weakness and no one wants to be played. These are just a few of the false narratives of today’s society, so the concept of being “still,” was a hard concept to grasp.
I was calling myself a Christian, but I wasn’t embodying the Christian lifestyle. I was ignorantly praying to God for blessings that I had not shown Him that I deserved. How is God going to bless me with a husband and kids, when I continue to operate in a lesser version of myself? How is God going to bless me with millions when I can’t stick to a budget and manage the responsibilities that I already have? He gave me a quick reality check, and I had to do some soul-searching.
To get what you’ve never had, you have to do what you’ve never done. It wasn’t until I decided that if I wanted different, I had to do different. Taking matters into my own hands hadn’t been working, and it was time to give it all over to Jesus. Sometimes you receive this “ah-ha,” moment when nothing is going as planned, or you hit rock bottom. I encountered a little bit of both. I took a big leap of faith when I moved across the country, with the expectation to be propelled straight into my destiny, but God had other plans. He wanted me to be still. If I wanted a different outcome, I had to rely on Him. He dissolved relationships, friendships, and career opportunities so that I would focus on Him. It was the most difficult thing that I had ever experienced. It’s funny. Even in all of my frustration, I wasn’t mad at Him because, in my heart, I knew what He was doing. He was after my trust, and patience requires trust. I wanted to do life God’s way, but I was constantly being pulled in the other direction because of my impatience and lack of trust. All of the distractions had been taken away. Now It was just He and I.
Patience requires having a heart for God. He began to show me that I didn’t have a heart for Him when I was making poor unguided decisions. If I’m going to do things God’s way, I am going to need Him like never before. My love for God had to increase, for me to be able to be patient. My prayer life had to become consistent and intentional. Reading my Bible had to become a delight and not a demand. My relationship with God had to become stronger so that I’d be able to have patience for God to move in my life. My whole perspective of who I was and what I was called to do has changed. I no longer desire relationships with people that aren’t meant to be in my life. By placing myself on the world’s timeline essentially had me stuck in a rut, but placing myself on God’s timeline has opened my eyes to a world of new possibilities, desires, and dreams. God is not limited in anything so why put limitations on what you think He has for you? As the saying goes, anything worth having is worth waiting for. Patience is a virtue.
Take some time to think about this. In what areas have you fallen short because of impatience? How can you make the necessary changes to practice being more patient with God and with yourself?
~Love Peace & Blessings