Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you. Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other. And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else. 1 Thessalonians 5:12-15 (NIV)
What does patience look like? How will you know if you are being patient with everyone? How can you express patience towards others just as I have expressed patience toward you? Let’s stop right there. Why so? You have lavishly and generous expressed your patience to me. My goofy thoughts, dumb mistakes, unbelievable missteps, and outright sins have demanded unending and almost unlimited patience from you. The fact that you still love and care for me and even now are continuing to show me your patience is beyond my comprehension. For your patience, I am thankful. For your patience, I am grateful. For your patience, I give you all my love and thanks and praise and worship. That is very good. So, what is the problem? Why did we need to make such an abrupt stop? You want me to be like you. You want me to be patient with everyone. You want me to express the same patience to others that you have expressed to me. You are correct. I want you to be patient with everyone. That kind of patience doesn’t reside in me. I am not gifted at being patient. Being patient isn’t one of my better or stronger qualities. That does sound like a little bit of an understatement to me. You’ve noticed? Yes, I have noticed. One does not have to look hard to notice that you are not very patient. Well then, aren’t you asking a lot of me? Aren’t you asking too much of me? Not at all. How so? I am asking you to become like me. And I will remind you of a key thought, by asking you a question. Go ahead, I am patiently listening. You do have a sense of humor. Here is my question, “Can you become like me without my help?” There is no chance of that. Do you believe that I will help you to be patient with others just as I have been patient with you? Yes, I do believe that you will help me to become like you. Even in patience? Yes, even in patience. Will you rely on me, and place your faith in me, to make you able to be patient with others just as I have been patient with you? Yes, I will. That will be very good. Thank you, Lord.
Lord, I will be patient with others as you have been patient with me. I will show love, respect, and honor to spiritual leaders who work hard for my benefit. I will warn the idle, encourage the timid, and help the weak. Help me to express your kindness to everyone. Amen
Key Question… How are you being patient with others, just as the Lord is patient with you?
Living It Out… Make it your plan and goal to be patient with others, just as the Lord has been patient with you.
Seeing It Happen… Have faith that the Lord will help you to be patient with others just as He has been with you.
Get Ready To Share… Share with another person or your small group how the Lord has helped you to be patient with others.
Prayer To Bless Others… May you be patient with others just as the Lord is patient with you.
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