I missed my "O".
Did ya' notice?
I had been doing SO well. I was keeping up, and getting my blog posts out, albeit right at the end of the time I had to link up with Marcy, over at Ben & Me. *aherm*
I had things that I managed to fit in with the letter for each week.
Then last week happened.
We had a tummy bug in our house, and my week kind of turned upside down. All my plans, for our first week "off" in the summer, were scuppered. Well and truly.
If you know me at all, you know how I loathe tummy bugs.
However, the Lord must be moulding me and shaping me, because I dealt with this one with FAR more patience and FAR less stress, than previously! I didn't get all wazzed up when I realised what had hit the household. I just patiently got on with it, and it wasn't as bad as I expected!
This week, I have had more opportunities to both learn, and teach, patience.
It breaks my heart that I am such a bad example of being patient.
I often hear the words "You have EIGHT children? You must be so patient!", and CRINGE inwardly, under the conviction that I am *SO* not as patient as I should be. Patient in the "dealing with things calmly and with a level-head" way, and patient in the "long-suffering" way.
The word "patience", as it is often translated in certain Bible versions, is more accurately "long suffering". The emphasis there is on the fact that the situation is causing suffering to you - mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually - and that you bear it over time - "long".
In James, it says that "the trial of your faith worketh patience".
If you look at the Greek, it translates as "cheerful endurance"!
THAT is how we are supposed to deal with the trials of life. To CHEERFULLY endure.
Now, don't let me fool you. It's NOT easy peasy. It takes effort. I certainly haven't mastered it yet - not sure if I ever will! But, it's expected of us, as godly women, nonetheless.
Romans 5 tells us
"And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
And patience, experience; and experience, hope:"
All of our circumstances shape us, and the Lord intends it to be for our GOOD! So good that we can GLORY in our tribulations and trials (and I've had quite a few of late, in various forms!), because it turns into patience, which becomes experience, which becomes hope. Not in the vague, "I hope it works out" kind of way. Hope, as in "confident in the knowledge that God's ways are perfect, and I am content to be in the centre of God's Will, not matter how humanly "trying" it is", kind of way.
What's more, James tells us that if we
"let patience have her perfect work"
that we will be
"perfect and entire, wanting nothing"
Patience makes me complete, in every part, and teaches me to be content in every circumstance.
If that's the case, we should eagerly be shouting, every day
"BRING IT ON"!!
I *WANT* to be content and complete. If it takes some trials, to learn patience, it's all worth it.
"Oh the joy", spoken tongue in cheek, becomes JOY, as I learn to patiently accept the circumstances in life, which God, in His grace, love and mercy, allows.
I trust that you will learn alongside me, to turn your "OH NO" into patience!