A man was being tailgated by a stressed out woman on a busy boulevard. Suddenly, the light turned yellow, just in front of him.
He did the right thing, stopping at the cross walk, even though he could have beaten the red light by accelerating through the intersection.
The tailgating woman was furious and honked her horn, screaming in frustration, as she missed her chance to get through the intersection, dropping her cell phone and makeup.
As she was still in mid-rant, she heard a tap on her window and looked up into the face of a very serious police officer. The officer ordered her to exit her car with her hands up.
He took her to the police station where she was searched, fingerprinted, photographed, and placed in a holding cell.
After a couple of hours, a policeman approached the cell and opened the door. She was escorted back to the booking desk where the arresting officer was waiting with her personal effects.
He said, ‘I’m very sorry for this mistake. You see, I pulled up behind your car while you were blowing your horn, flipping off the guy in front of you, and cussing a blue streak at him.’ I noticed the ‘What Would Jesus Do’ bumper sticker, the ‘Choose Life’ license plate holder, the ‘Follow Me to Sunday-School’ bumper sticker, and the chrome-plated Christian fish emblem on the trunk; naturally…I assumed you had stolen the car.’
We get so impatient. Marketing firms have encouraged us to reinforce the concept of immediate gratification. We are told over and over again in commercials that we don’t have to wait for anything. We can have it all today.
I was very impatient for many years. I wanted to see an immediate reward for my effort or I would get frustrated and go onto another task. If I got bored or impatient I would just find something else that engaged my mind.
I first realized my impatience in relationships. I would never have a girlfriend for more than 6 months. When things got tough in the relationship I would just move on to another woman.
It happened in jobs as well. If I got bored or things got bogged down and it felt like things were getting to difficult, I would just find another job.
Things are always attractive in the beginning of any adventure, but I learned the hard way, that anything worth having is something that you are willing to work at.
I was an impatient person, with myself and others.
5 Negative effects of impatience
1. Run the risk of always being dissatisfied, upset, and angry at yourself for your slow pace of growth and change.
2. Easily lose your control and fire off outbursts of anger, temper, and blame on those who are slow to change and grow. .
3. Sacrifice friendships and relationships prematurely because the other person is not changing as quickly or as thoroughly as you desire. .
4. Become pessimistic about life, seeing only the “half empty cup” rather than the “half filled cup.”
5. Be in such a hurry that you neglect to count your blessings and see how far you have come.
“A fool gives full vent to anger, but a wise person quietly holds it back.” Proverbs 29:11
The Hidden Truth to Self Discovery is Patience
Everyone wants to say you can achieve whatever you want in 3 easy steps.
What I have learned is nothing of value comes ‘easy’
Here are 5 positive gains of developing patience
1. You slow down enough to experience the richness of relationships and life
2. You do not get discouraged but live with hope for the future
3. Learn to control your emotions
4. See God’s working in your life and others
5. Feel peace and tranquility because you trust in yourself and know God is guiding you to live into your fullness.
I can imagine as you are reading this you are saying, “Ok Jerry, I get it. Patience is important but I am impatient in learning this truth. How does one learn patience?”
Here are 2 key principles that might help you grow in patience
Live in Grace rather than Perfectionism
“Perfectionisms is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people. It will keep you cramped and insane your whole life.” Anne Lamott
Are you a perfectionist? Who are you in completion with? Why does everything have to be perfect?
Do you drive yourself and others crazy with your perfectionist mindset?
To let go of being perfectionist doesn’t mean you have to ‘settle ‘for things. It just means you have a realistic view that nothing is perfect.
Now let’s look at Grace
The definition of Grace- Generosity of spirit: a capacity to tolerate, accommodate, or forgive people.
Wow, doesn’t that sound like a much better frame of mind to live out of instead of perfectionism.
People who are perfectionist are usually hardest on themselves.
So start by giving yourself some grace. Forgive yourself; give yourself permission to make mistakes. Give other people room to make mistakes and give them a spirit of forgiveness.
Accept, understand, and forgive yourself.
Reframe your perspective with the past, present, and future. Do not dwell on your past mistakes and failings. Do not worry about what you will become or how you will act in the future. Begin to live each new day as a fresh start.
See people and situations through God’s eyes.
You see, our problem is that we usually attach an isolated event or a solitary action of a person, with that person’s heart and with that person’s character. What happens, one time a person will do something inconsiderate or they will act like a jerk on occasion, and we will assume that that’s the total sum of their character and will label them as a difficult person
It’s easier to have patience with others when we remember God’s patience toward us.
Do you have the patience to wait until the mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving until the right action arises by itself? “Lao Tzu
Ask yourself,”what am I suppose to learn from this situation?”
If you see the situation not as one to get through as quickly as possible but rather an opportunity to grow in your character and spirit.
This will help you have patience in the present moment.
Do not rush your life away
I found out that a reindeer, actually takes about 13 months for it to go from conception for it to be born. A camel, the longest of all, takes over 13 months for it to go from the little embryo to a fully born camel. Also, I thought it was interesting, there are some things that take less than nine months. For example, a pig only takes four months. A dog or a cat, actually takes the same amount of time. They only take two months. A kangaroo only takes 40 days. And then a rat takes only 21 days.
So here’s the thing, the next time you get impatient with yourself and with your spiritual growth, just remember, God is not trying to make you into a rat. God is trying to make you into the wonderful person you were created to be.
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.Living one day at a time; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it; Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will; That I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with Him Forever in the next. Amen. –Reinhold Niebuhr
Be a Miracle