Patience. That word was the bane of my existence for many, many years. Why? Because I had NONE. I was so far in the negative for patience it wasn’t even funny. I used to say that when they were handing out patience I didn’t even get in that line. I stood in other lines repeatedly, like the impatience line and the negative line (I kept getting back in line for this one–I have no idea why). I felt like I stood in all the wrong lines. This past year I finally (FINALLY!!) learned some patience. It’s still not 100% but some percent is better than no percent.
I can remember from an early age being very impatient. I think most kids are somewhat impatient but I had a mega dose of it. Remember, I stood in the line for it over and over again. Christmas Eve was the most tortuous day of the year for me. When someone told me no it made me even more impatient. It also made me want to do what they said no to even more. I wasn’t a disobedient child at all, actually, I was quite the opposite. But, on the inside I was secretly rebellious. The wheels would turn in my brain to think of ways I could manage to do whatever I was told no to. My ideas to overcome the no’s rarely manifested themselves beyond me thinking them but I did manage to bring a few of them to fruition.
As I got older my impatience in life seemed to grow. Things just never seemed to happen when I thought they should. I can remember when my kids were little the impatience I felt as I was trying to teach them to read and write. I wanted so bad for them to master these skills so they could go on to the next big thing. Children don’t do things in the time frame we think they should. They go at their own pace, not ours.
As the years passed and I got older I thought surely I would learn some patience. I had more life experience and (according to society’s view of older adults) I was supposedly wiser than I had been before. I should know by now that things take time and you cannot hurry them along, no matter how bad you try or want them to happen. But, I hadn’t yet learned patience and pretty much resided myself to the fact that I never would.
As I’ve written about before I’ve gone through some major changes in my life in the last year. One of them was finally learning to have some patience. The way I learned to have patience was something I never thought would happen in my life and is actually quite funny, to me at least. Patience came in the form of something I said I’d never, ever do. My friends and family were baffled when I told them what I was going to do because I always said I wouldn’t do it. What I did is ultimately what taught me some patience.
I’ve come to believe that every experience we have in life is a learning experience, whether it’s good or bad. I believe that God takes us through the bad experiences to make us stronger versions of ourselves and to prepare us for our next battle. He gives us the good experiences as a reward because not everything in life can be bad. What I always thought would be a bad experience turned out to be a good experience and I’m glad I did it. I’m glad not only because I did something new I thought I never would but also because this particular experience has forced me to be patient. There is just no way I can force it to happen, no matter how hard I try or want it to. I just have to be…..patient, and to have faith it will happen. I have to wait it out and let it happen in its own time, not mine. Why? Because I’m not the one in control here, God is, and He’s teaching me to finally have patience through this waiting game. He’s teaching me that patience is indeed a virtue.