2 Peter 3v8-9“Butdo not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is being patient for your sake.”
What does it mean to be patient?
And maybe a deeper question would be, what does it mean that God is patient with me?
When in doubt…Google it.
Here’s what I found.
The root of patience is pati, coming from the Latin word patientia, meaning”suffering”. In fact, in Latin, the word patimeans to suffer or pain.
Go ahead…scratch your head.
What are the implications here?
I resonate with this definition because for me, being patient, often feels like suffering. Waiting is painful. I’ll be honest…I want what I want and I want it now.
I used to love Hot Pockets. Before I was married I would buy them because I could throw them into the microwave and bam!!! I have dinner in minutes.
This is what I expect from God.
The only problem…
God doesn’t operate like a microwave. God operates more like a crockpot.
And so often…the waiting is painful. It can feel like I’m being pulled apart. The pressure begins to mount. The doubt creeps in. The questions build on one another. I go into full strategy mode because I need to make up for God’s inability.
I hate waiting.
Now go back and read 2 Peter 3v8-9…
It says,“TheLord is not slow in keeping his promise…instead is being patient for your sake.”
Peter says the Lord is going to keep His promise…it’s just not going to happen when I think it should happen. It might take a little longer. But it’s not because the Lord is slow to deliver…rather it’s evidence that the Lord is able to be patient for my sake.
This says a couple things to me:
- To be patient is to suffer. Therefore, Peter is reminding me that the Lord suffered on my behalf. And every time the Lord pumps the breaks on fulfilling His promise, it’s because He is patient. This is a reminder that He suffered for me and suffers alongside of me. I’m not alone in my waiting. I’m not alone in my suffering. I’m not alone in my pain. He is with me.
- It for my sake that the Lord is patient. I believe that God wants me to know Him fully. To hear Him fully. To see Him fully. Right now. He wants to overwhelm me with His love, His mercy, His goodness, His everything. But I might not be ready to receive His everything just yet. So, God is patient, He pumps the breaks and He waits…for my sake. And I think this pains Him, yet, He waits. He woos me. He invites me. He nudges me. He draws me in. Ever so slightly. Slowly. Daily. Patiently.
The next time you have to wait patiently for something…just remember…you are not alone in your waiting.
The Lord is patient with you and for your sake.