Please Be Patient As I Learn to Be a Patient

Do you find yourself hoping people will just please be patient with you? Lisa explains the struggle between being a patient and juggling the rest of life.

please be patient

photo courtesy of http://deliajude.blogspot.com. She found the button in her grandmother’s jewelry.

“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.” (1 Timothy 1:16)

I remember as a teen attending a conference at our local arena. They distributed tiny little buttons that everyone wore all week and on them it said, “PBPGINFWMY.” It was a reminder to all of us that stood for “please be patient, God is not finished with me yet.”

I have messed up plenty in my life. Regardless of how much I try, things come out of my mouth that are not touched by the Holy Spirit. I have given looks to my kid that say a thousand words–not all kind. I have complained to my husband, I have vented to God. Over the course of the last two decades, I have hurt people when I have not intended to.

Living with pain makes all of those normal life processes even harder to learn sometimes, because as we learn to do it all–be a parent, be a spouse, be a co-worker, be a child of God–we are living with unrelenting physical pain. And it is exhausting–physically, mentally, emotionally.

As I learn to do whatever I am supposed to be doing here on earth, I feel like I need to wear that button every day, “Please be patient. . . please be patient . . .” As I learn to be a mom, a writer, an encourager, I am also learning to be a patient. Even after nearly 20 years, I am still learning to juggle it all.

In fact, I called my physical therapist today to see if I could change my appointment by one hour because I have to pick my son up at camp, and camp gets out later tomorrow, because of attending the Padres baseball game, and when I made the appointment it was around what was supposed to be his dismissal time. She couldn’t move my time, which is okay, but I will need to find somewhere to go for 2 hours because camp and the doctor are both 15 miles from home. “Please be patient. . . while this patient learns to juggle it all.”

I love how the version The Message talks about patience:

“So don’t lose a minute in building on what you’ve been given, complementing your basic faith with good character, spiritual understanding, alert discipline, passionate patience, reverent wonder, warm friendliness, and generous love, each dimension fitting into and developing the others. With these qualities active and growing in your lives, no grass will grow under your feet, no day will pass without its reward as you mature in your experience of our Master Jesus. Without these qualities you can’t see what’s right before you, oblivious that your old sinful life has been wiped off the books. (2 Peter 1:5-9)

Passionate patience. We all needpassionatepatience!

“What? Another insurance claim denied?!” Please be patient with me. . .
“What do you mean you are bored? You had a 6-hour playdate today!” Please be patient with me. . .
“I am sorry I haven’t called you back/emailed/responded to your post/texted you.” Please be patient with me. . .
“The card/check/note/gift/package/return is in the mail.” Please be patient with me. . .
“I’ve been trying to cut down on that medication, doctor, but it’s been really hard.” Please be patient with me. . .
“Oh, dear God, I love You! I promise You will be my priority today.” Please be patient with me. . .

Imagine if we all were passionately patient with each other.

Prayer: Dear, Lord. Oh, how often people may need patience with me! But God, help me to put You above all else. When I place You first in my day, above all the other responsibilities, everything else falls into place. I know You are patient, but I don’t ever want to abuse your mercy. Amen.”

About the author:
Lisa Copen is the founder of Rest Ministries and she lives in San Diego with her husband and son. She is gradually learning how to balance motherhood, family, illness, and ministry, but she still knows it will be a lifetime lesson. You can see the books she has written, including, Why Can’t I Make People Understand? at the Rest Ministries shop.

When have you needed to ask “Please be patient be with me”? Does it seem like you tend to ask this a lot? What steps can you take to juggle your priorities and responsibilities in the right order?

Feeling like a little gospel? Albertina Walker and James Cleveland sing “Please Be Patient With Me: (God is Not Through With Me Yet).” This is a long video, so you may just want to hear a few minutes of it, but it’s a wonderful song.