Active Patience: Beauty in the Wait

I have come to find that patience is often a call to action. I know this idea of “active patience” goes against what we have learned growing up but when it comes to our faith it may be just what we need to hear.

Let’s take a look at a common definition of the word “patience” found in Webster’s dictionary: “the capacity to put up with pain, troubles, difficulties, hardship etc. without complaint or ill temper. The ability to wait or persevere without losing heart or becoming bored.” When we think of patience in our Christian walk, we should not have the mindset of “putting up” with God’s plan for the present. While the wait may not always be filled with joy and we may still long for the future, God has something planned for today. We have no idea what God is preparing us for and we must trust that God knows exactly what He has planned for us today.

I am a dreamer, a visionary, and chronically addicted to Pinterest. Like many women, I create these dreams in my mind and am very disappointed when life does not follow suit. I can create as many schedules, lists, and Pinterest boards as I want but without God’s timing and His hand orchestrating it all, none of it will ever happen. I have started to learn over the years the beauty in God’s plan and His timing, but something I have been digging through recently is this idea of active patience. While I used to think that patience was just sitting around while I wait for God’s perfect timing, I have begun to understand that God is not just holding back those good things for a later date, He has countless blessings for today which we would not experience otherwise. We have a mission for today and dwelling on tomorrow is a dangerous thing.

In the book of Ephesians, Paul prays for the people of Ephesus that they would be filled with spiritual strength. At the end of a prayer, Paul writes these words reminding the Ephesians of God’s perfect plan. “Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” (Ephesians 3:20-21, ESV)  As a dreamer, a sinner, and someone who is fervently trying to follow the will of God, this verse has been a constant reminder that I don’t have to have it all planned out. No matter what I have planned, God’s plan is always immeasurably better, for me and for the growth of His kingdom.

I have also come to realize that having those desires and dreams is not bad, in fact, it is a beautiful gift from God. I believe that God places those desires in our heart for a reason. As I dream of the day when I will have my own family I am encouraged to continue strengthening my own walk with the Lord so one day, Lord willing I will be able to pass my same passion to my children. Also, as we focus on the theme of this entire blog, God has placed many of these desires and passions in the heart of a woman because we are created to care for others. That love that we share is from our Creator. He designed us to love and to have the desire to love, to pour ourselves out for our families and share with the next generation the love He has for each one of them as His Children.

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