There is a story about a hare boasting to a tortoise how fast he could run. The tortoise challenged him to a race. The hare, thinking the tortoise could never win, had a little nap en route. Meanwhile, with persistence and ingenuity, the tortoise got ahead. When the shocked hare realised this, it was too late and the tortoise had won. It just goes to show that it doesn’t matter how slowly you go, as long as you are facing in the right direction.
We all have ‘drivers’ within us which unconsciously pressure us to do things certain ways (i.e. with speed, with perfection). These are usually learnt in childhood as a response to parental or teacher expectation. They can be effective, but can also result in anxiety or stress.
See if you identify with any of these-
We all have one or two of them, (except the tortoise)!
‘Hurry Up’ people can be good at starting projects, energetic and enthusiastic, they like to get things going, but they can miss essential details and make mistakes. They can suffer from stress and be impatient with themselves, others, circumstances and even God.
Impatience can be harmful physically, emotionally and spiritually; it can also affect our relationships with others. We are all naturally impatient to see change, especially as we emerge from the doldrums of the pandemic, but to succeed in the Christian life we need not just faith, but also patience. It helps us withstand problems and not give up. Ideas and plans need time to mature within us, so does God’s spirit. God wants us to wait and not to fret, for He works slowly and perfectly. We need to let go of our need for control and find peace in Gods timing.
Patience is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit. We can confess our impatience to God and ask Him to make us a more patient person, and learn to trust in the ‘Slow Work of God’.
Galatians 5:22-23 ‘The fruit of the spirit is patience.’
Proverbs 14:29 ‘Whoever has patience has great understanding’.
Check out this lovely poem by Pierre for de Chardin.