A few weeks ago I heard a sermon entitled, “Love is Patient,” and ever since God has been showing me exactly how impatient I am.
Before this sermon, I thought of myself as a relatively patient person, but now everytime I am impatient, God gently whispers to my heart, “Love is patient.” It has been a very convicting three weeks. And although it is never fun to see my sin under a microscope, it has been a good reminder of my need for Jesus in my life. This morning I was rereading a passage that I had read with my hubby a few weeks ago. It is from I Timothy 1.
12 I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me faithful, appointing me to his service. 13 Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. 14 The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.
15 Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. 16 But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life. 17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen.
As I reread these words this morning, I was encouraged by a phrase I had underlined when I read it a couple of weeks ago. In the second parpagraph Paul explains that he was “the worst” sinner. (Before Paul met Jesus he was killing Christians!) He goes on to say that even though he was the worst sinner, Jesus was merciful to him so that Jesus could demonstrate His unlimited patience for those who would follow Him.
Wow! After three weeks of realizing my lack of patience, I needed to be encouraged by Christ's unlimited patience. I am encouraged this morning knowing that Christ is my example of patience. And that because He lives in me, I can, through Him alone, display patience to others in my life. I am also humbled knowing that I have tested the depth of His unlimited patience.
I have been trying to be patient in my own strength and have fail miserably. Today I am reminded that I don't have to do it in my own strength. Not only that, I CAN'T do it in my own strength. So today I am committing to let Jesus live in and through me. My heart's desire is that the unlimited patience He has for me, will be the same patience I have for others in my life.
Take a few minutes to reflect on the patience Christ has had for you.
Are you commited to love others with this same patience?
How can you demonstrateChrist's unlimited patience to others in your life?