“Never pray for patience.”
This was advice often given to me when my children were small, often spouted by an equally saddled mother who’d become frustrated at the antics of one of her offspring. Those words were supposed to give me a good chuckle; but they sent shivers of dread down my spine.
You see, those wisdom-dropping moms and I both know a little secret about patience – that it is grown much in the way human muscle is grown – by being tested beyond its capability and then allowed to heal. If I were to pray for patience, I knew, there could be no predicting what trials God might send my way in order to stretch that particular “muscle” to the point just beyond its ability to endure.
Of course, God did use some challenges during my childrearing years to increase my patience, and I am thankful for that journey; but my kids are older now, and my trials are of a different sort. In this new season of life, I once again find myself tempted to ask the almighty to please increase my patience, whether it’s waiting for the sales to come through from my latest ad campaign, or finally just being able to say I have my book “out there.”
The thought of actually asking God to increase my patience still makes me feel a little bit “Squicky.” This week’s podcast is all about patience and the Christian Writer.