1-6-20 Love Is Patient 1Co 13:4

Hi Friends,

     Been a while since I sat down to put my thoughts and experiences to “paper,” sort of speak. Last year was a really tough one for me. I learned a lot about myself, and to be completely vulnerable, there wasn’t much that I learned that I liked! I clearly saw that I still have a big issue with impatience and trying to control every event and person in my life. Am I alone in this? Then let’s talk about it, shall we? Disclaimer : I do realize what I will be describing is a “first world problem” and I do not mean to sound elitist in any way, but the lessons I learned from the problem has impacted me for the good and it is my hope that everyone can glean something for themselves from my experiences. Ok, let’s get into my hard lesson…

“Love is patient…” 1Co 13:4

     By God’s Grace, we were able to remodel some rooms in our home last year, including our bathroom and kitchen…can you already see where I am going on this “patience” topic! If you have ever had the “pleasure” of undergoing such a feat, you know all too well that “your schedule” never comes close to matching what actually happens! My wonderful and forgiving husband did a lot of the work himself (while working two other jobs! Thank You, Lord, for this man in my life!!!), so you can see even more clearly how trying to stick to a concrete schedule just did not work out very well. Also, we can never discount the Enemy either. Just when it looked like we were making progress, Joe would get hurt or some item or other would be delivered damaged and unable to be installed. It was one delay after the other and, BOY, did it test my nerves to the max! Again, I did not do well at all with all these interruptions to MY schedule. But I am sure that was the center of the problem: it was MY schedule. I was trying to control every little thing that happened and when and how and…and that is just NOT how life works!

     So if Love is patient, what is impatience?! Very unloving. And this was my struggle for about seven months as this seemingly endless remodel kept being pushed off further and further into some future date. The chaos in our home only added to all my frustrations. I never really knew how much I am unable to handle having my home turned upside down. To have to search for various kitchen items or where my clothes was “temporarily” stored vexed me more than I care to say. And the dust? Oh the dust! It was everywhere. We actually had to “move” to the bedroom at the end of the hall because I would cough all night long. It was the perfect storm to reveal my immaturity! And I spent way too much time thinking and acting like the unloving, selfish, mean person I thought I had left behind! Guess I still have a LONG way to go before I become the “Image of God” that my New Creation Self is supposed to become…but this is exactly why God’s amazing Grace is so very amazing! 

     God is not delusional about who we are. He clearly sees our immaturity and self-centeredness and still loves us. He is Patient with us as we continue to learn who we are in light of His Perfect Nature and continues to work with us to transform us into His likeness. Transformation cannot happen until we admit we need changing. Well, last year taught me I not only need to change more and more, but I want to change too. I did not like the person I displayed throughout that whole fiasco. Now don’t get me wrong! We had many good times throughout it too. It was fun working with Joe to design and watch it all come to life, but those moments when the “Old Ugly Diane” came out were painful to experience! Yet I share this sad story to show you there is Hope. Even when you are having a tantrum about something in your life, you can learn a valuable lesson. You can see where you still need to be refined and turn to our Lord, humbled and repentant, and let Him continue to create you into the loving person He originally designed us to be. So keep turning back to our Patient God and keep growing in His amazing Grace…oh and if you offend someone, make sure you ask for their forgiveness too! The more I humbled myself to God, and Joe, the more I let go of that false sense of control and the more I enjoyed the process. This is all part of the Abundant Life, want it? Then won’t you join me?

 Until we meet again, keep lifting your eyes to God, He’s closer than you think!

<>< Peace, Diane

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