Jeremiah 25:11, “‘This whole land will be a desolation and a horror, and these nations will serve the king of Babylon seventy years.'”
2 Timothy 2:24-26, “The Lord’s bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will.”
Not Done Quickly
Counseling Luther to move more temperately, Erasmus judged that ancient institutions could not be quickly changed and would yield more easily to persuasion than condemnation. We can agree that Luther, not Erasmus, “understood the times,” and still appreciate the truth Erasmus stated.
Benjamin Rush disgustedly resigned after he repeatedly failed to get needed medical reforms through Congress for the Revolutionary Army. John Adams begged him to stay and fight the abuses from within. “Patience! Patience! Patience!” Adams said. “The first, the last, and the middle virtues of a politician.” Wasn’t the wicked Iago correct when he said, “How poor are they that have not patience. What wound did ever heal but by degrees?”
By it’s very nature, success in spiritual work is as elusive as the missing link. Workers feel they may as well plough the seas as to plant gospel seed in human hearts. The work of integrating faith and practice demands such firm, dogged efforts that many seek easier toil elsewhere. Spiritual work takes time – fast-profit entrepreneurs need not apply.
Courtesy of Speaker’s Sourcebook of New Illustrations by Virgil Hurley copyright © 1995 by Word, Incorporated. Used by permission.
*Unless otherwise noted, Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
A handful of patience is worth more than a bushel of brains. – Dutch Proverb
Adopt the secret of nature: her secret is patience. – Emerson
He that can have patience can have what he will. – Franklin
Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet. – Rousseau