I was reading in the book of Genesis recently about Joseph and what he’s been through. Not only was he falsely accused and betrayed by his family but he really relied on his faith in God to get him through.
If you’re unfamiliar with the story of Joseph, basically, he was the favorite child of his father Jacob (Israel). When he was 17 years old, he had two dreams in which his brothers were bowing down to him. As you can imagine, this didn’t sit well with them. They originally planned on killing him but after their oldest brother convinced them not to kill him, they decided to sell him into slavery. Thinking they’d never see him again, they lied to their father and told him that he was killed. Some time later, he was falsely accused of attempted to rape his master’s wife and was imprisoned. Finally, he was released because he interpreted the Pharaoh’s dream. Eventually everything God showed him what would happen actually came to be. But it took like 20 years.
Something that stands out to me is Joseph’s good attitude in spite of all he went through and with his family. His faith never wavered. He was still obedient and never felt like God abandoned him. At the end of it all, he realized it was God’s hand in order to save people.
The got me thinking. How many times have I felt like giving up when things got bleak? It’s easy to want to give up when things are taking quite a while to happen. In the story of Joseph, again, he had the dream at 17 and it didn’t come into his life until 20 years later. 20 years!! He was almost 40! Can you just imagine how much faith that took? I know for me personally, I’m overly frustrated with how long things are taking for me to achieve the goals that I’ve wanted, which includes having a husband and children, living in a house with said family and just being secure in my career. I’m not there yet!
My life has not gone how I’ve planned it and to be honest, I have no idea what the future has in store for me. After graduating high school, I had this idea of how things would go but so far nope. It took me a long time to get my first kiss ever (18 years old), I got my license late (early twenties), graduated late, got into my career pretty late…I’m just a late bloomer and that’s not good at all.
How can we be more patient?
- Identify the cause of distress. What’s causing these unsettling feelings?
- Simpilfy your life. Don’t try to do too much. Don’t live outside your means.
- Be realistic. Are we putting way too much pressure on ourselves? Do our current life situation line up with what we want?
- Build a tolerance for being uncomfortable. Life is messy. Might as well get used to it
- Let it be. Resisting or trying to fix it will not help sometimes. There will be some situations that are out of our hands. The best we can do is accept it and figure out our next steps.
- Develop Spirituality. If you apply the principles you learn from the Bible, it can help you to be more patient. We need to give our troubles to God and pray fervently. If it’s within his will and you are doing your part, God will handle the rest. We just have to trust and believe and give it to him. The Bible states that with prayer and supplications, we should let our petitions be made known to him.
For us, especially nowadays, we may be suffering very temporarily but we need to realize it will work out for God’s praise. We should focus on God’s promises for our lives because he never lies. He also never causes problems to happen, although he does allows circumstances to take place (think Job). While I’m waiting to be blessed with a husband (if that even happens…)