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Summary: Patience is more than the ability to wait in line without getting frustrated. Patience is much deeper than waiting in the doctor’s office without getting irritated. Patience is an active endurance of opposition, not a passive resignation.

A man’s car stalled in the heavy traffic as the light turned green. All his efforts to start the engine failed, and a chorus of honking behind him made matters worse. He finally got out of his car and walked back to the first driver and said, "I’m sorry, but I can’t seem to get my car started. If you’ll go up there and give it a try, I’ll stay here and blow your horn for you.”

--James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited (Wheaton: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc, 1988), p. 396. Copied from Bible Illustrator 3.0 by Parsons Technology.

Annual cost of running red lights (in medical bills, car repairs, etc.): $7 billion

Average amount of time saved by running a red light: 50 seconds

-- U.S. Department of Transportation, cited in Hope Health Letter (2/96). "To Verify," Leadership. Copied from Bible Illustrator 3.0 by Parsons Technology.

Most people need a big dose of patience. We’re always in a hurry. We want things done yesterday.

When I was boy, we’d be helping Daddy work around the house or on my granddaddy’s farm and he would send one us to get something he needed. He would send us to get a tool, a five-gallon can of gas, fresh water for the water jug, or something. I can’t count how many times he would say as my brother or I was leaving, “Turn your hat around backwards so I’ll think you’re coming back.”

Daddy was wise enough to know that sometimes boys get distracted along the way. He also didn’t like waiting.

Well, I guess I come by my impatience honestly. In fact all of us do. Why? Because we learned it from our parents who learned it from their parents.

I’ve been thinking a lot about patience this week. I have read the thoughts of others on the subject and I have studied what the Bible teaches about patience. The reason we feel that we are impatient is because we do not have a full understanding patience. Being a patient person involves much more than waiting in line at Wal-Mart.

Take a look at your notes. Here are some thoughts about patience I found this week.

He that can have patience can have what he wills.

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)

One minute of patience, ten years of peace.

Greek Proverb

A handful of patience is worth more than a bushel of brains.

Dutch Proverb

Be patient with everyone, but above all with yourself.

Saint Francis of Sales (1567-1622)

One moment of patience may prevent disaster; one moment of impatience may ruin a life.

Chinese Proverb

Patience is the ability to put up with people you’d like to put down.

Ulrike Ruffert

Patience is the companion of wisdom.

Saint Augustine of Hippo (354-430)

Patience is the mother of expectation.

Henri J. M. Nouwen

Patience means waiting without anxiety.

Saint Francis of Sales (1567-1622)

Patience: accepting a difficult situation without giving God a deadline to remove it.

Bill Gothard

Teach us, O Lord, the disciplines of patience, for to wait is often harder than to work.

Peter Marshall (1902-1949)

The times we find ourselves having to wait on others may be the perfect opportunities to train ourselves to wait on the Lord.

(Joni Eareckson Tada)


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