Hope for the Heavy Heart/Revised Edition
The following is taken from Chapter 3 entitled, Patience.
Remember that growth is measured over time. We talk about the growth of a child, for instance, not in terms of a daily change but over a period of time. Often, it’s a span of many months or perhaps years that pass before we can say, “My, that child has really grown.” So it is with adults on the spiritual level. Growth is a process and change is often slow and minute, difficult to measure. We may even need someone close to us to comment on the growth he or she has seen in us; it can be difficult for us to see it in ourselves.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth (1 Corinthians 13:4-6).
He lists “patient” first of all, for He knows how demanding we can be of Him, of others, and especially of ourselves. We need to cut everyone, including ourselves, a little slack: a wise, elderly woman once said to me, “God works slow but sure.” Trust that over time, as you exercise patience, you will see your suffering differently than you may today. Healing is not an event but a process, as I’ve said, often a slow, laborious, even painstaking one. God knows how impatient we are to get blessings. As we daily submit to what He is allowing in our lives, to His will, He molds in us patient endurance in order to create and hone in us a character of love in His eternal, unfathomable way, as I’ve said. Christian recording artist Steve Bell sings that we may be lonely, that it’s a hard road making us holy, but in the long run there will be glory, or in other words, “Hang in there! It’ll all be worth it in the end!”
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