Sunday, March 1, 2015

Be Patient

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.
Ephesians 4:2

I have a friend I would love to give away.

She is a nice enough woman. Her only problem? She thinks she is an expert in everything. She was married for only a few years, but she knows how to fix every marriage problem. She never had any children, but she knows exactly what will make Johnny behave. She knows the best solution to every problem in the world. In her great generosity, she is more than willing to share her wisdom with anyone who asks. She even shares her wisdom with those who don’t ask!

Ever know someone like her? Not the easiest to love!

People who are self-absorbed and think they know everything irritate me. As the saying goes–people who think they know everything annoy those of us who really do!

It does not matter how much she annoys me with her attitude or her actions. God commands me to bear with her in love. He commands me to patiently endure her lectures, put up with her attitudes, love her just like Jesus loved me. Anything less and I have sinned.

I have sinned. I have no excuse.

No matter what annoys us, God commands us to put up with each other in love. Not in grouchiness, not in rolling our eyes, but in love.

Just like Jesus bears with us in love.

Don’t you think we annoy Jesus? How often in prayer have we told him just how he should run things, without seriously deferring to his wisdom as God? We think the wisdom he puts in the Bible is OK, but ours is better. Those who think they know everything annoy the God who really does!
Yet he loves us. He forgives us. Day after day, he loves you and me. We tell him what to do. He patiently listens to us, incorporates our ideas when he can, and always answers us in love. He guides our lives so we never suffer the full consequences of our arrogant stupidity. He keeps pulling us back to himself. He enjoys listening to our thoughts and our prayers. He looks for every chance to share his thoughts with us through the Bible. He keeps dealing with us in love. He never tries to give us away. He just keeps forgiving us for the sake of Jesus and doing what is best for us.
He really does bear with us in love!

Jesus, thanks for not treating me the way I deserve. Forgive me for thinking I’m smarter than you. Forgive me for becoming impatient with others who think they are smarter than I. Help me bear with them in love, just like you have done with me! Amen.


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