By Rick Warren
Life is a test in patience! This week you can expect to be tested in at least four different ways:
You will sit down to dinner and someone will knock at your front door; you will be in the rest room and the phone will ring; you will be working on a deadline and your boss will ask you to attend a meeting.
Flights will be cancelled or delayed; car trouble may leave you stuck on the freeway. How will you react?
Those little things that are beyond our control and make life uncomfortable. Irritation tends to bring out either the best or the beast in us.
You will be forced to wait... in lines, in offices, in traffic, in elevators. People would rather do almost anything but wait.
Research has proven that people who are habitually impatient are the ones most prone to be heart attack victims. Proverbs 19:2 says "Impatience will get you into trouble." You could probably provide a few personal examples of that truth!
The Bible gives practical advice for learning to be patient.
1. Discover a new perspective.
Find a new way of looking at the situation. Patience always begins by changing the way you think about something. And there is always more than one way to look at something. "A man's wisdom gives him patience."(Proverbs 19:1).
2. Develop a sense of humour.
Learn to laugh at yourself and your circumstances. Find the fun in your frustrations. On the average, people with a sense of humour live longer than those who do not. "A relaxed attitude lengthens a man's life." (Proverbs 14:30).
3. Deepen your love.
When you are filled with love, almost nothing can provoke you but if you are filled with anger almost anything will. Love is thinking about what others need, not just yourself. "Love is patient" (I Corinthians 13:4).
4. Depend on God.
"God can strengthen you...with ample power to meet whatever comes, with fortitude, patience, and joy." (Colossians 1:11).
Why don't you ask God to help you develop your patience this week?
Distributed by CBMC SA (www.cbmc.co.za).