THE RESURRECTED LIFE: Patience, focus, endurance

Ross Scheer, Lead Pastor of Resurrection Life Church of Big Rapids

This week I had the pleasure of bringing my sons to work with me for a day.  My wife and I have two boys – Jackson, who is nearly three, and Mason, who is one and a half. I took them into my office and closed the door so that they could play while I worked. I quickly realized that I was not going to get much done that day! I am amazed at how short their attention span is.

As soon as they would start playing with one thing, I would begin working. In no time they were getting into trouble. Taking the books off my shelves, breaking the blinds over my window and dumping out my trash were just a few of the things on their list of mischievousness. I spent nearly five minutes trying to stop Mason from turning my printer on and off over and over. I finally gave up.

Why am I telling you this? Because sometimes I think God feels the same way about us. Imagine how God, living for all eternity, must feel like our lives here on earth are so short. We, on the other hand, spend our time flip-flopping through different life decisions and lessons. We must seem so impatient and scatter brained.

The Bible has a lot to say about having patience, focus and endurance. Many of us as believers struggle with these three things.  When we pray, we expect immediate results. We give God a few minutes a day of our focus.  And we are quick to quit something if we don’t see results from God right away.

Even Jesus’ disciples had trouble with focusing and enduring in certain moments. In Matthew 26:41, Jesus tells his disciples to “watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation.”  He was saying this as he was going into the garden to pray. When he returns to them they had all fallen asleep.  In the scripture it seems like Jesus is referring to avoiding the temptation to fall asleep while they are keeping watch. But in our lives this can relate to situations where we need to be spiritually alert and focused.

In the Bible, one of the major characteristics of God is consistency. He is faithful to follow through with the things that he promises us. It is usually our lack of patience and focus that lead to us feeling like our prayers were not answered. This feeling of unanswered prayers tends to be one of the biggest reasons people question their faith.

In your own life, focus on the prayers that you have been praying and see if God really has answered them, maybe in a different way than you would have expected. If the answer has not come, be patient. Endure the situation you are in faithfully. In my own life I have had to do this, and in hindsight I can see how everything I went through has worked out according to Gods plan … not mine.

 

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