“I just need to have more patience!” said every exasperated mom at least once in their lives (or 500 times).
Patience is often something my friends and I request prayer for. And I’m always happy to pray this for my friends (and myself). But patience is kind of an abstract idea, a characteristic, that looks different for different people in different situations.
It’s hard to live a life of patience. One moment I have it, the next moment I’ve lost it. As I’m writing this, I’m trying to think of patient people. What is the secret to their patience? And how can we be patient in all the situations we find ourselves in?
Let’s look to God’s word, our source of truth and wisdom. Patience is one of the fruits of the Spirit.
But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! – Galatians 5:22-23, NLT
So patience is just one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit. But how do we get this fruit? How do we show we have this fruit?
When we spend time with God, the Spirit works on us. He speaks to us, convicts us, and helps prune out the bad fruit to make room for the good. The more time we spend with God, the more he can work on us. Which in turn means, we will show more of the fruit of patience.
You may feel lost at this idea of having fruit in your life, but another way to word this is to think of fruit as evidence. There should be evidence in our lives that we spend time with God. The evidence will look like more patience, more kindness, more joy, etc. You get the idea.
So, one way to get more patience is to spend time with God. But God has some more to say about patience. Let’s call it, “Giving grace.” Ephesians 4:2 says, “Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.”
Make allowance for each other’s faults. What does this look like with our kids? We give them grace and allow them to mess up because they’re kids. Moms, we must maintain this perspective. Kids are people in progress. They are going to act immature because they are. And we love them no matter what. We can have patience and make room for them to be children.
We also must be moms who pray. Besides reading God’s word and spending time with him like that, we also must spend time talking to him. When we pray, we direct our focus to God–the source of patience and all those other fruits of the Spirit. God can then help us. And if you’re anything like me, you need God’s help, especially to tap into his flowing patience. He can shift our perspective to remember to give grace to our kids. He can point out where we’ve messed up and redirect us to make necessary changes.
So moms, getting more patience, or living with more patience, looks like this:
Puruse time with God + Maintain the right Perspective + Pray and talk with God = Patience
Pursue. Perspective. Pray.