Patience

Romans 5:1-5 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.

I was doing the intern reading tonight and missed my mark (new Bible, hasn’t been broken in yet) and started reading cheerily along in Romans instead of 1 Corinthians, where I was supposed to be reading.

I’ve been considering a post on patience, and this has pushed it out a bit. I’d never seen this until tonight… I do love my NASB, after being a strict KJV gal… (Thank you Lord, for t’was You who picked my reading).

Romans 5:1-5 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

One usually thinks of hope as a prerequisite of perseverance, but here you see it as the result. When we practice patience and perseverance through obedience to God, in faith that His Word and promises are true, we are eventually rewarded with hope. This hits my heart in its deepest places… because although I am not emotionally patient, I have learned to wait and persevere. In so doing, I have been greatly rewarded. And ’tis true, the more I persevere, the greater my faith and my hope. It’s like carving channels in rock through which water can pour – the water both carves the passages and utilizes them. The more I submit myself to God’s carving, the more room He makes in my heart, the more He pours through me.

And I feel wonder. And I hope for greater and greater things from His good hand. I dare to ask larger things, things closer to my heart, and trust. Trust that even though I don’t see the changes now, the changes will come in His good time.

I am *not* emotionally patient, and I don’t feel calm about things on the surface of my heart most of the time. But in the deep places, the places carved deeper each day… in those places, there is peace.

First, persevere. Then, you can hope.

This is *profound*. I will be shaking my head in amazement for a few days on this, but I wanted to share it.

Wow.

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