Summary: Patience is one of those "essentials" to our walk with God. It may come in a variety of ways, especially through trials and troubles. The troubles with riches and the rich leads to patient endurance.
One fella walked into a doctor's office and the receptionist asked him what he had. He said, "Shingles." So she took down his name, address, medical insurance number and told him to have a seat. Fifteen minutes later a nurse's aid came out and asked him what he had. He said, "Shingles." So she took down his height, weight, a complete medical history and told him to wait in the examining room. A half-hour later a nurse came in and asked him what he had. He said, "Shingles." He said, "Shingles." The doctor said, "Where?" He said, "Outside in the truck. Where do you want them?"
There may be two ways to look at this. First, that delivery man’s patience was certainly tested. Second, he wasn’t very smart or else he would have explained what kind of shingles he had.
2. All of us encounter situations that can increase our patience
a. Stuck in traffic
b. Traffic lights (I think the City Manager programmed a picture of my car into the traffic control system and every time I drive into an intersection, the light turns RED!
c. Wal-Mart Lines
d. Perpetual hold on telephone
e. Immoral, illegal, and unethical behavior among those who should know better
3. James 5.7-11
a. Rich abusing poor (5.1-6)
b. Proper use of money – generosity of this congregation
c. In midst of money troubles and troubles from the moneyed
I. Patient Endurance In:
A. Fruit Production
1. Farmer’s Input
Some years ago, a study was done by an agricultural school in Iowa. It reported that production of a hundred bushels of corn from one acre of land required 4,000,000 lbs. of water, 6,800 lbs. of oxygen, 5,200 lbs. of carbon, 160 lbs. of nitrogen, 125 lbs. of potassium, 75 lbs. of yellow sulphur, and other elements too numerous to list. In addition to these ingredients are required rain and sunshine at the right times. Although many hours of the farmer’s labor are also needed, it was estimated that only 5 percent of the produce of a farm can be attributed to the efforts of man.
2. The Reason for Hebraic blessings like: “Blessed are you, Lord Our God, King of the Universe, Creator of the fruit of the earth.” – Fruit of the vine – Matthew 26.26-29
3. An em-pha`-sis on waiting – Isaiah 40.31
but they who wait [hope] for the LORD shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.
4. We are co-laborers with God we act and he acts – 1 Corinthians 3.6
I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth.
B. Anticipation for the Lord’s Return
1. The last promise of the bible – Revelation 22.20
He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!
2. A Destructive Picture – 2 Peter 3.10-18
3. A Grace Picture – 2 Peter 3.8-9
8 But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
C. Attitude Adaptation (v. 9 and 4.11-12)
1. No Grumbling (Israel in wilderness)
In some parts of Mexico hot springs and cold springs are found side by side. The woman often boil their clothes in the hot springs and rinse them in the cold springs. A tourist, who had been watching this procedure, remarked to his Mexican friend, “Guess they think old Mother Nature is pretty generous.” “No, senor,” the other replied. “There is much grumbling because she supplies no soap.”
2. No Judging – judgment for the judgmental (eternal and earthly)
3. Difficult times are opportunities to shine – Philippians 2.14-16
14 Do all things without grumbling or disputing, 15 that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.
a. Lights in darkness
b. In view of the end of the game
II. People of Endurance
1. Forth-telling vs. Foretelling – 4 people that it would have been better not to have been born – those consumed with above; below; behind; ahead – faith is about today primarily, with a world to come
2. Calling people to God
12 They have lyre and harp,
tambourine and flute and wine at their feasts,