"Let patience have it's perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. "
~ James 1:4
It's a word that I have heard about since the time I was old enough to understand words themselves. When I was small (okay, insert short people joke here), I heard about being patient when waiting at a doctor's office, or in line for my favorite ride at Disneyland. As I became older, it became a word that I was often reminded of when I was waiting to hear if I got a part in a play, or the solo that I wanted in a performance. Sometimes the word would resonate through me as I waited to see what direction relationships would go in. In any of these cases, patience was NOT my forte. Patience was something that I knew a LONG time ago needed to be refined in me.
Sometimes it can take some pretty extreme circumstances to teach character in a person. The Lord has known even longer than I have that patience is a trait that I somehow needed to learn more about. There have been a few life circumstances that I believe He has used to draw me in and teach me about patience. Without going into each one of them, I will just say that most of these circumstances have included loss. Loss of life, loss of relationship, loss of monetary things. Loss can and I believe WILL teach us much about being patient. In the process of waiting each of these times, I have felt that God has changed me, and therefore my relationship with Him has changed.
Perfection and completion.
Am I perfect? Am I complete?
I don't get to acquire either of these until I come face to face with Jesus. Am I MORE perfect and complete though?
I believe I am. I believe that through these life circumstances I have grown. A lot. I see things much differently now. I see being patient as an opportunity for more refinement. I see it as a time for more connection with the Lord, and the people here that I love so much.
The reward has always come too. There is always a big pot of gold at the end of the long waiting spell. Not that I need the reward. I really don't. I see enough reward in the fulfillment of my personal relationship with Jesus. BUT... He rewards me with fulfilling the desires of my heart.
Always. In His perfect time.
As I continue to travel through this life, I am confident that I will continue being challenged in the area of patience. It's my area. I am thankful for the growth that I am seeing within, but I know I am not finished yet.