Fresh Hope – 2nd January 2020

Our technology-centered world is making it increasingly difficult for us to learn how to be patient. Social media gives us immediate feedback. Anyone, anywhere in the world can be contacted in a matter of seconds. Anything can be delivered: food, flowers, furniture, and fashion. Instant answers to all questions are available on Google.  

The diagnosis of ADD in children has skyrocketed in the last decade, and adults are equally finding it increasingly difficult to focus. 

Studies have shown that if an Internet video or advert doesn’t ‘grab’ a viewer in the first two seconds, the viewer doesn’t have time to watch the rest and scrolls right on past it. 

Patience is something that has to be developed and grown. Hopefully from an early age we start learning the discomfort, yet essential quality of being patient. When your parents don’t give you whatever you wanted, whenever you wanted it – this was good for us! The ability to say no to instant gratification and keep your focus on something bigger and better is essential to our maturity. 

Today we have fewer waits in our daily lives, but it is also giving us less patience for other things. 

Why do we need patience? Because most good things take time. Most things that provide instant gratification, also only offer fleeting satisfaction. Think about it – your phone lighting up with a new message, your pizza order arriving, that quick fling with someone you know isn’t right for you. Most things that offer lasting satisfaction, take time, effort and a whole lot of patience… Working towards a healthy body, a meaningful friendship, waiting to have sex, a lasting marriage, saving for a house, raising a child – these are deeply fulfilling experiences of which we were made for, at the end of being patiently focused. 

God’s way of doing things is contrary to the way the world is doing things. God isn’t driven by the need for ‘things to happen quickly’ and He is not a quick fix, feel-good-instantly God. God is more interested in us developing a strong character. A strong character includes the ability to be patient. 

Are we willing to wait? Are we willing to wait for the right spouse? Are we willing to delay gratification for something better? Are willing to wait for God to speak? Are we willing to wait through the processes that God needs to take us through? 

Perhaps you are waiting for breakthrough on some things, and perhaps God is just waiting for you to wait! 

Galatians 6:9, ‘Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up’. 

Romans 12:12, ‘Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer’. 

Psalm 37:7, ‘Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him’.

Emma Burchell

A daily devotion for a better way of living.