Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. – Colossians 3:12
I have intentionally seldom prayed for patience. Additionally, I have been known to chastise people who have voiced a prayer in which they asked God for patience on my behalf. (Why would I pray for something that I know is gained only through opportunities to practice the thing I am lacking?!)
Cultivating patience also involves waiting and I want immediate results (instant gratification). Thankfully, God gives us what we need, not merely what we think we want.
Over the past twenty five years, in the midst of
cleaning up spills – again
sleepness nights – again
answering what’s for dinner for the third time since lunch – again
calling poison control – again
waiting in the ER with an adventuresome (or accident-prone) child – again
teaching little ones how to read – again
teaching high school Algebra – again
reading through the same books aloud – again
training new chores – again
God has given me daily opportunities to develop the very thing I’d been intentionally avoiding. He developed patience in me stealthily over the long haul of raising the next generation.
Patience, it turns out, is worth the years of practice it takes to cultivate it.
PONDER: Which of the qualities listed in Colossians does God most desire to develop in you? List the opportunities He has granted you to do just that…and thank Him for them.
PRAY: Father, I thank You for faithfully providing me with opportunities to grow. I want to be like Jesus, yet I am so reluctant to learn in some areas of my life. Thank You for being patient with me and that Your work in my heart includes the areas in which I am most resistant. Please continue to bring about in me the good work that you have begun.
Excitement fills every part of his little 5 year old body as he races around looking for Easter eggs, his 3 year old sister hurrying to keep up with him, and 7 year old brother trying to lose both of them! But as he spies the next egg he forgets everything except the treasure that lies inside…
Sweet memories…I wish I could go back. Why? The treasure! To teach them about the true treasure! You see, it’s not really about what’s inside the egg. It’s about WHY we celebrate…
Easter is the most important holiday for Christians. It is what separates Christianity from other religions. Easter is the celebration of our risen savior! He is ALIVE! He is RISEN! This celebration is the promise and hope of our faith. It’s not colorful, dyed Easter eggs we hunt or the treasures inside. No, the treasure is Christ Himself and the Word of God which gives us His story.
“I rejoice at your word as one who finds great treasure.” Psalm 119:162
That’s what I would do over again. I would spend more time telling my kids the story of Jesus and what He did for us, dying to forgive us for our sins. Coloring eggs and hiding them full of worldly treasures is fun, but worldly treasures pass away too quickly. As a parent, my goal for my children is like Paul’s goal for the Colossians, “My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.” Colossians 2:2-3.