Christmas season is a time of advent; of waiting in expectation for what will come. I have a picture of my 16-month-old grandson on my phone. He’s looking up at our Christmas tree waiting for something — he’s hoping its good and we’re trying to teach him patience.
James is clear that patience is a discipline for effective living. He’s speaking to Christians who are facing persecution and simply says, be patient! He adds that patience is not holding your breath and merely sitting on your hands. It’s the hard work of establishing your heart — that means getting your focus on the right priorities for the long haul.
Being patient and establishing our hearts is preparation for a big event; that is the coming of the Lord. When He comes, the equation of life changes drastically. When Jesus came as a child, He came to redeem His people. When the Spirit comes, He convinces us of what Jesus has already done for us. One day Jesus will come again and every knee will bow and every tongue confess that He is Lord.
Waiting for the coming of the Lord is preparation for the amazing new realities that will unfold when Jesus Himself shows up in the middle of less than perfect lives.
Vice President, ChildHope
Prayer: Lord, I’m one of those impatient Christians. But, I want to establish my heart — help me be ready for your appearing in my life.
7 Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains. 8 You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.
Scripture quotations are from The ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.