PATIENCE! We live in an instant society. We want everything within minutes. Fame, fortune, position, education, food, drink, news, information, and service of any and all kinds must be instant. Every moment of every day needs to be packed with activity. Patience does not seem to be a virtue in our society. It appears that even many church services must be instant and timed to the split second and people moved on out the door. Is it any wonder that so few people have really developed deep and long lasting relationships with other people? And is it any wonder that we can live next door to someone for years and yet know so little about them? Even the body of Christ, the Church, seems at times to be tired of ministering to a spiritually lost and dying world because the world hasn’t responded instantly to our message of redemption in Christ.
James, back in the first century A.D., had to remind the early church to be patient. “Be patient, then brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming,” (James 5:7 NIV). I guess a lack of patience has always been a problem; maybe even more so in our society today. As Christians we need to remember that God is in the process of calling out those who will be a part of His eternal kingdom. It is a process that is taking some time to complete. How long is the process? We don’t know. God has not revealed His time table to us nor does He owe it to us to do so. James reminded the Church of this, “See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains,” (James 5:7 NIV). God is still harvesting His crop for eternity and thankfully He waited on you and me to be ripe for picking.
If you are like me you are longing for the Lord’s return to rapture us off planet earth and into His presence. But there are still a lot of people I know who don’t know Christ as Savior yet that I would like to see go with me. James reminds us, “You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near,” (James 5:8 NIV). As Christians we need to be patiently serving Christ and watering the surrounding individuals and masses with the water of His Word so they can receive Jesus as their Savior. Patience is a virtue and because we will be patient and do God’s work many more people will join us when Jesus returns and we meet Him face to face. And His coming is near. Keep an eye on the sky.