5/23/2020 12:11:00 AM Thank You Sir May I Have Another
Dr. Vince Hefner, Pastor First Baptist Church, Cherryville, NC
Something that I have been working on my entire life is the ability to be patient. I don’t know if it is a medical issue, or just my personality, I hate to wait on anything! I have made some strides in the right direction, especially when it comes to red lights and stop signs, but I still have a ways to go.
When I was a youth, even the thought of waiting for something bad was more than I could stand. It was not the actual event that bothered me, it was the anticipation of the event that placed me into a tail spin.
I can remember one day when I received two “whippings” in one morning, before 8 a.m.! It all started on the school bus with a verbal exchange with another student. I can’t remember the entire conversation I had with my classmate, but apparently I had bested him with my verbal wit, and then he said, “I’m gonna whip you at recess!,” while a bus full of students listened and oohed and awed at his daunting words directed at me.
Recess was at least three hours away, long enough for everyone to tell their friends to be waiting for a fight on the playground. You know how kids can gossip! I quickly surmised that I could not win against this bully in a fight on the playground, and I certainly didn’t want to lose in front of everybody at recess, so I used my best hope of the lesser of two evils: the element of surprise! If I was going to lose a shoving match, I had rather do it in front of fewer people, where some of them might see the battle going in my favor. So, I did what any child would do that is filled with rage and impatience, I jumped on my adversary in hopes of a quick victory or defeat!
I would like to say that day was a great day for kids who had been picked on by bigger guys, and that I struck a blow of justice against all bullies that day, but I would be wrong. I would like to say that was the end of the story, but it wasn’t. The school bus driver sent me and only me to the principal’s office, and since I was the first one to throw a punch, it was all my fault, according the school bus driver. As I explained my plight to the principal, he was not amused or impressed by my story. I guess he also had a bad morning.
One good thing about my principal, he didn’t have to ponder on what he was going to do for my punishment. This was back in the day when the principal had a paddle in his office, and he was not afraid of using it. The bad news was, I was going to get paddled, the good news was he was not going to make me wait until recess! I had received two whippings before school even started, it was going to be a great day!
What is the moral of this story? First, I have never benefited from being impatient! Impatience has not brought me wisdom, health, peace, or even answers. To the contrary, impatience has always brought more pain than pleasure. If that is the case, then why do I still daily battle with impatience? I don’t know!
However, the Bible tells me of God’s plan for me to deal with life’s challenges. Ephesians 6:11-13 says, “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”
Impatience is the fruit of wanting things the way you want and when you want them. Godly patience is the ability to know that God is in charge of all things, and when we properly use His Word in every area of our lives, we will experience a peace that comes from God’s will be accomplished in our lives! Are you ready for the blessings of God, or are you going to live in the disappointments of your own impatience? I plan to choose God’s way over my way, and I pray my impatience gives way to His will.