Between Many Worlds

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Love endures long-suffering and is patient and kind.

Do we feel like we’ve been long-suffering and not sure why? Are there people out there that provoke us or intentionally test us? How fast do we get distracted when trials come our way?

I have forgotten how to endure long-suffering for Christ. I usually take matters into my own hands and try to manipulate them, faster than God wants.  I run out of patience for the situation and rather than wait upon God’s direction; I move forward with my own.

So, how can we endure long-suffering, (i.e. a job-loss, financial ruin, failing health, family difficulties, marriage issues) for Christ’s sake?

Let’s define long-suffering.

(Verb) To be patient, long-suffering, to bear with, to be long tempered. (Vine’s Expository Dictionary of New Testament) It also goes on to say that, “Long-suffering is that quality of self-restraint in the face of provocation, which does NOT retaliate.”

How many times do we feel in our heart that we just want to get even? I know I’ve dealt with people who have intentionally tried to rob me, or take advantage of me and people who have humiliated me whom I’ve loved dearly.

Longsuffering is a fruit of the Spirit, and if we are to live by the fruit of the Spirit, then we obviously can’t obtain self-restraint on our own. God is the perfect example of self-restraint. There are several accounts in the Bible where God would have been justified to intervene hastily, but didn’t. 1Peter 3:18; Genesis 18:20; Genesis 15:16 are just a few examples.

 

We can also endure if we remember how to live by Luke 6:31:
Do unto others as you would have them do unto You.

  • Husband irritating you? Try to ignore the irritation until you can calmly talk about it with him. Then treat him the way you would want to be treated.
  • Job draining your life? Re-evaluate why you are working where you are working and treat your fellow employees as you would want to be treated.
  • Family drama got you down? Do unto your family as you would like done unto you.

Don’t be the cause of difficult situations.
Don’t add fuel to the fire.

I went through a time where I briefly lost my ability to be kind; every quirk drove me nuts. Every hateful remark put another dagger into my heart which left me to wonder where my ability to love had gone.Question

 

I just wanted to retaliate. I now know exactly where it went; it got caught between many worlds.  It got caught in the world of being cheated on; the world of being lied to and the world of inappropriate finger-pointing. I lived “lost-and-angry” for way too long.

Jesus’s words in John 16:32 reminds us that we do not suffer alone. We do not have to  endure finger-pointing alone; back stabbing alone or dagger digging alone.

What do you think about suffering for Christ’s sake?  Share your thoughts in the comments below or at Living by Grace on Facebook.

John 14:20 In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in Me, and I in you.livingbygracepic.jp

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