Summary: This was a short message given following a video episode of The Andy Griffith Show as part of an unorthodox summer outreach message series
The Virtue of Patience
There once was a man who prided himself on being extremely punctual. He followed a very precise routine every morning.
His alarm went off at 6:30 a.m. He rose, shaved, showered, ate his breakfast, brushed his teeth, grabbed his briefcase, drove to the nearby ferry landing, parked his car, rode the ferry, walked to his building, marched to the elevator, rode to the seventeenth floor, hung up his coat, opened his briefcase, spread his papers out on his desk, and sat down in his chair at precisely 8:00 a.m.
Not at 8:01, not even 7:59.
Always at 8:00 a.m.
He followed this same routine without variation for eight years, until one morning his alarm did not go off, and he overslept. When he did awake, he was panic-stricken.
He rushed through his shower, nicked himself shaving, gulped down his breakfast, swiped his teeth, grabbed his briefcase, jumped into his car, sped to the ferry landing, jumped out of his car, and looked for the ferry.
There it was, out in the water a few feet from the dock. He thought, I think I can still make it! He ran down the dock at full speed. Reaching the edge of the pier, he launched himself over the water and, miraculously, landed with a loud thud on the ege of the ferry deck.
The captain rushed down to make sure he was all right. “Man,” he said, “that was a tremendous leap . . .
but if you would have just waited another minute,
we would have reached the dock, and you could have walked on.”
Good morning, my name is Bob Hostetler
and I’m a member of the Leadership Team here at Cobblestone, a bunch of people who want to love others into life-changing encounters with God.
I hope you have enjoyed this celebration so far and for these last few moments before we conclude, we are going to take a brief look at patience, which was illustrated in the video we just watched.
Patience is a virtue most of us understand generally, but we’re going to take just a few minutes to discuss patience from a Biblical perspective. So let’s answer some key questions about patience. FIRST…
I. Why is Patience A VIRTUE?
Patience is NOT a virtue because Andy Griffith is patient, or even because Daryl Zimmer is patient. It’s a virtue because . . . God is a patient God!
Peter once wrote to Christians who were wondering why Jesus hadn’t returned yet,
“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise [to return], as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)
God is a patient God; that’s why patience is a virtue, because it’s a part of God’s character. As Paul said,
“I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display His unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life.” (1 Timothy 1:16)
Our God is a God of “unlimited patience!” We read about His patience all through the Bible. So, patience is a virtue because it’s a part of God’s character. . . But that leads us to the question. . .
II. What is Patience?
Well, let me mention first what patience is NOT. It is NOT
A.Two Greek words are used in the New Testament for "patience."
1. makrothumia --a choice to REFRAIN FROM AVENGING ONESELF, at least right then; it’s a putting off, delaying our anger or desire. Makrothumia is the OPPOSITE OF FIGHT and is related to LOVE.
2. hupomone is a choice to BRAVELY endure that which cannot be controlled (or our convictions demand we not control) rather than resisting it... This is the OPPOSITE OF FLIGHT and related to HOPE.
B. So, Biblically speaking, patience is a quality by which we bravely endure a situation or delay gratification. It is the supernatural result of calm, prayerful, Scripture-sensitive thought.
We live in a world that thinks it’s good to take care of number one and thinks that each of us ought to get what we want when we want it.
For example, Barney, in the video we just saw was very impatient for his good friend Andy to have a wife. But the Bible tells us that we need to be more like Andy, patiently, calmly, prayerfully enduring our circumstances even when they are less than perfect . . . And that means YOU, Diane Lillibridge!
We know that a part of God’s character is patience and that we should display that same character. We also have a better idea of Biblical Patience. Finally, we need to know…