March 27, 2020 Memory Verse

2 Timothy 1_14

Fruit Of The Spirit: Forbearance/Patience

Patience on blackboard

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 

Over the last few weeks I have looked at the fruits of the Spirit–love, joy and peace. Now I will be looking at forbearance or patience. The NIV translates the word as forbearance, while many other translations translate it as patience. Both carry the meaning of holding up under pressure or during trouble without anger, anxiety, or frustration.

Patience is something that is not often seen in this fallen world. Things cannot happen fast enough. No matter how fast something is, in a short time people want it to be faster.

Take a look at computers and how fast they are today compared to forty years ago and yet, people complain that they are not fast enough. Or look at the speed of driving down the road. Regardless of how high the speed limit is, there are some who will drive faster.
Frustrated with computer

The patience in these situations are just with things. People are also lacking in patience when it comes to life situations. Promotions do not come fast enough, someone does not return a text or phone call fast enough, a person is not checking out fast enough, and the list goes on indefinitely.

Others are also not patient with themselves. They did not learn fast enough, they did not change fast enough. They were not successful enough or some other fault that they see in themselves.

For many believers a lack of patience is found in waiting for a person to change a habit or for God to answer a prayer.

In all of these ways and many more people are not patient.

The bible is filled with examples of people who were patient and those who were not patient. Joseph was given a vision of him being a ruler. Before that came about he was thrown into slavery and into prison. But after many years of patience, he became the second in power over Egypt, only under Pharaoh.

Empty prison cells

David was anointed to be the next king of Israel. He had to run for his life for many years before he became king. He had multiple opportunities to seize the throne, but he would not take it by force. David waited for God to hand it to him. He waited in patience for God to move.

Job went through may trials and a lot of loss in his life. Yet, he waited patiently for God to restore him and stop the trials. He refused to curse God in his struggles, even when he did not understand what was going on or why it was happening.

The ultimate example of patience is Jesus:

For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12:2b-3

The ‘enduring’ in these verses is patience. It is putting up with trouble and keep going forward without anger or frustration.

Snowy mountain

Jesus had taken on the all the sin of every person for all time and the anger of God the Father’s wrath against that sin so that you and I could have forgiveness and life. As He did that, He did not complain or murmur. He took with patience and love.

Now with describing patience from the bible and examples of how patience was displayed, what does that mean for you and I?

Good thing you asked! We are to live our lives just as Jesus lived His…with patience. So what does that look like?

Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools. Ecclesiastes 7:9

If one is patient, he will not be quickly provoked to anger. In other words he will not get angry when someone does something wrong or does not change like he thinks they should.

Roaring bear

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9

It takes a lot of patience to keep doing what is good and right. This is especially true if the person who you are doing good to is not grateful or despises you. Be patient because there is a reward for you from God if you do not give up.

Wrong way sign

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 1 Corinthians 13:4

God is love and we are to be like God—love. Everything that we say and do or do not say or do not do must be done out of love for God and for others. When we have the enduring perfect love of God in our hearts, we WILL be patient with ourselves and with others.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6

When you are anxious about anything, you are not at peace. Something is wrong and you are worried about it and striving to change it. Instead of being anxious bring it to God with thanksgiving and allow Him to deal with it and guide you through the situation. Relax and be at peace about it, rather than uptight and anxious. God is in control, let Him be.

Anxious lady

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12 

You will have afflictions, sicknesses and problems, Jesus promised that you will have trouble. Be patient. It will not last forever, though it may feel like it at the moment. Hold on and be patient because God is in control and is bringing you through the situation.

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. Psalm 37:7

People will do wicked things. Good people in the church will do mean things or wrong things. Be patient and wait for God to move. Don’t forget God is in control of every situation. He sees what is going on. Be patient as you wait for Him to take care of the situation.

Control room

being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6

You do have faults, but God is working on you to fix them. He is building you into the image of Jesus. Do not be so harsh and impatient with yourself, but keep moving forward in Jesus with His Holy Spirit growing and changing daily. God will finish the work in you He set out to do. Be patient with yourself.

There are many other verses throughout the bible that talk about patience. Take the time to look them all up.

Seek God in learning to have the patience that the Holy Spirit can bring into your life. In order to get it, remember that you will have to go through some tough struggles challenging your patience. You cannot learn patience without a struggle against it. People and situations will challenge you.

Satan does not want you to be patient, but to blow your top and get angry, causing you to say and do things that are sinful. He wants you to fail and he will do what he can to bring that about.

Hold onto God and be led by His Holy Spirit and you will have patience.

Holding bars

When you are bearing His fruit of love, you will have joy. When you are bearing the fruit of joy, you will have peace. When you are bearing the fruit of peace, you will have patience or forbearance. Be filled with the Holy Spirit and bear His fruit. It is worth.

Thank you for continuing with me on this journey of looking at the fruit of the Spirit. Please feel free to share this with someone who can use it. Any comments or thoughts will be appreciated.

Next week I will be looking at kindness. I hope to see you then.

Fruit of the Spirit: Peace

Peace word

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 

Over the last two weeks I have looked at the fruit of love and joy. Now I will look at peace. Peace is something that most people want. They desire that the world would be at peace. Most do not like to have any turmoil or troubles in their life.

Nearly everywhere one goes, there is always someone who is seeking peace. People all over the world have days that are filled with stress. Some are wondering if they will still have a job soon, some worry about their health or the health of a loved one, some are stressed about politics or wars, stressed about the economy, and stressed about many other things. They want to slow down in life and be able to relax with no worries or concerns.

Relax by water

The common belief is that if there is peace, there is no battles, wars or troubles of any sort. There is only tranquility and calmness. Everything looks picture perfect where there is peace.

However. that is not the picture that the bible presents with peace. The peace that God gives is much deeper than simple tranquility and no wars or trouble.

Jesus said:

John 14+27

Jesus said He was giving us His peace. It was a different peace than that which the world gives. This peace is tranquility, but not in the same way that the world views tranquility. It is peace in spite of trouble. It is a peace that surpasses the troubles of this world.

Later Jesus said:

I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. John 16:33 

There will be trouble in this world. The reason there is trouble is because of sin. Ever since Adam and Eve had sinned and were cast out of the Garden of Eden, there has been trouble and sin.

Looking at the this world, it may appear as if sin and the devil are winning the battle. Sin appears to increase more and more. Nations that once were founded on Christian principles are no longer holding to those principles and are actually making rules against those principles.

Busy people

This can be stressful for the believer if he does not have the proper perspective of what is really going on. If you do not have the Holy Spirit in you opening your spiritual eyes to see what God is doing, you will be stressed out and without peace.

Being filled with the Holy Spirit and following Jesus with all of your heart will give you a peace that the world cannot understand nor have. You first of all have peace between you and God.

When a person does not follow Jesus, he is an enemy of God. There are some people who claim that they are not against Jesus, but just don’t want to follow Him. To not follow Jesus is to be His enemy. You are not doing what He wants you to do, doing what is best for your life.

Soldier with weapon

The other peace you have in being filled with His Holy Spirit and bearing His fruit is peace in knowing that God is in control. Regardless of how ugly this world gets, regardless of the persecution one may go through, God is still in control.

As you are struggling with the troubles of this world, breakdowns, debt, death, sickness and more, you can be at peace knowing God has your best interests in mind. He is allowing what is best for you as long as you follow Him.

The peace, the fruit of the Holy Spirit, will show up in your calmness during times of tragedy and troubles. When people hurt you or cut you down, you will be able to respond in love because you are at peace.

Calm mountain lake

God’s peace is an internal peace that comes from the heart, not outward circumstances going a certain way.

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:4-7 

Your life needs to be one of peace. An inner peace that comes from God’s Holy Spirit. Peace that the world does not understand or have.

As you know and have the love of God and His joy, your life will be characterized by His peace. Love for others will cause you to strive to have peace with others. Love for God will cause you to obey Him and keep peace with Him. Joy will take away all anger and anxiety and replace it with peace.

Woman at peace

I trust that you will allow the fruit of the Spirit–peace to shine in your life, evident in every area of your life for God’s glory and praise.

Thank you for continuing to go along with me on this study of the fruit of the Spirit. I hope you are being blessed by this study. Please feel free to share this with anyone you think may need it.

Next week I will be looking at the fruit of the Spirit–forbearance. I hope you will return to continue this study.