Summary: The Power of Patience - James chapter 5 verses 7-12 – sermon by Gordon Curley PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request – email:


Example #1: The Farmer. (vs 7-9)

Example #2: The Prophets (Vs 10).

Example #3: Job (vs 11):



• A little boy was standing at the end of an escalator.

• His eyes focussed of the handrail.

• The shop assistant asked, “Son are you lost?”

• He replied; “No, I am just waiting for my chewing gum to come back.”


• George Mallory was the famous mountain climber;

• He may have been the first person ever to reach the top of Mount Everest.

• In the early 1920’s he led a number of attempts to scale the mountain,

• Eventually being killed in the third attempt in 1924.

• Before that last and fatal attempt he had said these words:

• “I can’t see myself coming down defeated.”

Mallory was an extraordinary climber, and nothing would force him to give up:

• His body was found in 1999, 27,000 feet up the mountain,

• It was well preserved by the snow and ice,

• He was just 2000 feet from the peak.

• Give up he did not.

• His body was found face down on a rocky slope, head toward the summit.

• His arms were extended high over his head.

• His toes were pointed into the mountain; his fingers dug into the loose rock,

• Refusing to let go even as he drew his last breath.

• A short length of cotton rope – broken – was looped around his waist.

He had a team of people waiting for him further down the mountain:

• Months later that that team returned to England;

• And a banquet was held for them.

• A huge picture of Mt Everest stood behind the banquet table.

• It is said that the leader of the group stood to be applauded,

• And with tears streaming down his face, turned and looked at the picture.

“I speak to you, Mt Everest, in the name of all brave men living and those yet unborn” he said. “Mt Everest, you defeated us once; you defeated us twice; you defeated us three times. But Mt Everest, we shall someday defeat you, because you can’t get any bigger but we can.”

• Those words found there fulfilment In 1953 when two climbers;

• Sir Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzig Norgay, reached the top

• TRANSITION: I was struck by that line of the speech:

• “We shall someday defeat you, because you can’t get any bigger but we can.”

• We need to develop patience, otherwise we remain spiritual dwarves;

• When God wants us to become spiritual giants!

• We can get ‘bigger’ in character;

• But there are no short cuts, we need to learn patience!

• Patience, like most Christian characteristics,

• Is one of those character traits that grows over time;

• It is never something we get given to us overnight.

• To help us hang on in there and be patient & endure?

• James gives us three examples of those who were patient and endured.

Example #1: The Farmer. (vs 7-9)

“Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains.

8 You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.

9 Don’t grumble against one another, brothers and sisters, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door!”


• The story is told of a London yuppie who had made enough money to retire;

• And so he moved to the countryside and bought a piece of land.

• He went to the local farmers market purchased 100 chicks.

• The seller said to him, “That’s a lot of chicks,”

• The yuppie replied, “I don’t mess about, I mean business,”

• The following week to everyone’s surprise;

• The yuppie was back again at the market.

• He went to the same seller and said; “I need another 100 chicks,”

• The seller was surprised to see him and said: he said.

• “Boy, you really are serious about this chicken farming,”

• The yuppie replied. “Yes, I am but I need to sort out a few problems.”

• The seller replied; “Problems, what problems?”

• The yuppie replied:

• “I think I planted that last batch too close together.”

• TRANSITION: One of the great thing with the letter of James are his illustrations:

• Unlike my corny jokes, James simple stories are self-explanatory.

• Everyday images that we all understand.

• Verses 7-9 remind us that farming takes time;

• Nature is never in a hurry!


• Some of you know that my wife Penny has had an allotment;

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