Patient Grace

Journal Entry // November 30, 2021

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

2 Peter 3:9 ESV

God’s patience appears to be slowness to the eyes of the impatient, which I am definitely counted as one. The world around us, from the beginning of time, has pushed against God’s patience and uses it as an excuse for sin and “proof” that God doesn’t exist. Challenging our faith by pointing out the continued rising of the sun each morning and the daily, weekly, annual running of the world and universe. Using their logic to say that this shows there is no God or that he is distant. Peter tells me not to fall into the trap of this lie.

GK Chesterton tells a story of little child running into the arms of their father and their father lifting them into the air with a smile. The child is giddy with pleasure and excitement in the act. Probably being surprised the first time with the thrill coming from the unexpected. When the Father places the child on the ground, what happens next? The child says, “Do it again.” The father nods his head and they repeat this process for as long as the father has strength to endure. Each time the child laughs with the act. The child laughs and enjoys each and every lift into the air. Each time saying, “Do it again.”

When I read this passage from Peter, this story came to my mind. It’s such a beautiful analogy of my relationship with God. A full throttle enjoyment of spending time with the Father… Again and again. God never tires and is patient. So very patient with me.

I so easily take for granted that the sun will rise in the morning, that my lungs will continue to take in fresh air and expel the stale, that everything in this universe is set and organized by God’s unchangeable purposes. I see the patient repetition of life and rarely think to praise and worship God. My mind drifts from seeing the continued sustained beauty of creation and I make it mundane. I neglect the awe and wonder of this world pointing me back to the Creator.

I become impatient with God on a regular basis. I want what I want and I want it now. I don’t want the continued patience of a steadfast loving Father. Actually I do, but in my selfishness I don’t realize this is what I have. I turn life into an amusement park. A place where I am always looking to indulge my senses and seek the next thrill, which has to be better than the last.

But God is patient with me and the world. The Lord is working his plan of salvation through the lives of people in the world and in myself. God patience with my stumbling and faltering heart is cause enough for rejoicing. His grace and mercy abound each and every moment. This is my “Do it again” moment. I want to be like that child. I want to run to Christ for forgiveness and mercy and grace, have him embrace me, then lift me up in the air with a smile. And as he sets me back down in the world, I want to look him in the face and say, “Do it again.” I want to keep drawing closer and closer to Jesus each and every day. In the mundane routineness of life and in the exciting adventure that comes with loving God with my heart, soul mind, and strength.