Devotional: Fruit of the Spirit – PATIENCE
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Galatians 5:22-23 Young’s Literal Translation (YLT)
“22And the fruit of the Spirit is: Love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, 23 meekness, temperance: against such there is no law; and those who are Christ’s, the flesh did crucify with the affections, and the desires; 25 if we may live in the Spirit, in the Spirit also we may walk; 26 let us not become vain-glorious — one another provoking, one another envying!”
When looking at the original texts in Greek, the word “patience” that we use in this verse was originally the Greek word makrothumia, meaning long-suffering. Have you ever realized that? The word used for patience here in this verse is actually translated as “long-suffering.”
Patience is not about standing down in a passive state and just taking abuse. It is having endurance to get through your struggles while waiting on the promises of God. The only way we are able to withstand the hard times to make it to the other side is by the power of the Holy Spirit which grants us patience as a fruit of the Spirit. Without God, we would crumble in the sight of adversity, but because we have His Spirit we can withstand the storm and persevere.
Because we know that God has control, we are able to endure the struggles without falling apart and giving in. It is because we know the outcome. If we can just stand firm in our faith, it will work out in our favor.
God never promises that we will never struggle or face afflictions ever again, but He does promise to provide us with his love, strength, and protection. When we are going through hard times in our lives, our true selves tend to surface. If we are truly devoted to God and trust Him, then we will be able to trust and endure the struggles, therein, showing our faith. God will always provide in His perfect timing and we must have faith and trust that truth. He sees things that we do not see and is always using situations in our lives to do greater work in our lives or even those around us. We may never even know it.
We must always have patience for answers and for God’s promises. James wrote a letter to the twelve tribes of Israel who were scattered about the nations speaking on this patience. There is a lot of wisdom in the book of James, but this struck me when I read it.
James 5:7-11 King James Version (KJV)
“Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh. Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door. Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience. Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.”
I post in King James Version because it is considered public domain, but read this scripture in other translations.
James is telling the people to be patient in perseverance and not to grumble or grudge one another or we will be judged. We are to stand firm and show patience. He speaks of those who have endured the pains of this life and how they are considered blessed. James even references Job and his trials which he endured. Job did not struggle forever. As he perservered through the struggles, God blessed him with love and mercy. He was blessed even more for all that he had lost.
As we struggle through the hard times, the valleys, of life we don’t have to sit passively and complain. We can stand firm in our faith and choose to be patient on the Lord’s work in our lives. When you are tempted to doubt or be discouraged, look into the Word for the promises made by God. He has not changed. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Hebrews 13:8 King James Version (KJV)
“Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.”
As promised, click below to get your study guide. I hope this helped shed some new light on the meaning of “patience” in your life.
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