I’ve heard it said that we should be careful what character traits we ask The Lord to give us…because in order to become patient, one must be placed in a position that requires patience.
Things like loving our enemies, being joyful no matter the storm, choosing direct kindness instead of writing someone off…
We want to be them, but we don’t want to journey to become them.
Knowing this at a young age, there are a couple of some things I intentionally don’t ask for.
Patience. Gentleness. Longsuffering. (Who wants that anyway?) Self-control. Temperance…
There is no room for these things in a woman that works in a man’s world.
I know that I am yelling, but she needs to obey and we need to go.
There are only so many hours in a day…
I’ll take some peace and some wisdom any day. Faith is good; I can handle that.
But I do not have time for patience…and gentleness will make me a pushover.
I can control myself…but if no one is going to listen, I am going to yell.
You’re going to have to figure this one out on your own; I don’t have time for it.
I didn’t ask for patience or gentleness or longsuffering or temperance or self-control. I have always been successful without it.
But then I had a baby…
And one day, that face stares back at you in confusion of the discord between what you preach and what you do.
And then they become a mirror…and, sometimes, the glimpses of yourself that you see are not very pretty.
They can be downright ugly.
Now I see it.
Now I get it.
Picking and choosing fruits of the spirit will make you extremely unbalanced. It requires all of them to make a full picture of wholeness and of who Jesus is on Earth through us.
Living only by my fruits of choice manifests itself as someone who, at the height of all that is ugly, is demanding, impatient, knows everything, and is short-tempered.
For someone else who prefers joy and gentleness, they may be poor at confrontation, enablers of bad behavior, and unable to have a conversation any deeper than make-up or sports.
We all have strengths. And we should celebrate them.
We all have weaknesses. And we should do our best to change them.
It is going to require the gentleness, the longsuffering, and the patience to be the wife, mother, physician, and person that I am called to be….and that I want to be.
It’s definitely going to take some work…but I’m guessing it will be worth it.