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That Patience Is Not Godly (or Is It?)

Perhaps I (among many others, maybe you too) have misunderstood patience as "an ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay" (as the dictionary defines it)--the good grace to wait for others to accompany you--but 'research elsewhere' reveals that that's more of a P.C., 'handling with kid-gloves' meaning of the word.

Etymonline reveals that's its pure meaning is closer to 'willingness to suffer'---reminding me that the King James Version of the Holy Bible uses the words "long-suffering" where many later versions translate 'patience.' Etymonline refers to an entry in Ambrose Bierce's The Devil's Dictionary where patience is called "
A minor form of despair, disguised as a virtue."

And personal experience reveals that people usually won't practice patience unless they have to. I'm very-frustrated with people who haven't practiced patience for me (a Traumatic Brain-Injury overcomer who therefore is not quite 'up to speed'), but I'm just as guilty of the impatience that power brings! When I've got 'my goals' in sight (not necessarily "my glory" and "my profits etc.," but more 'where I need to be and what I need to do') and when I've got the power to be there and to do them adequately, I don't have any problem going and doing them and going-on regardless of any others who wanted to be there with me!

That--you could say--proves that God is not all-powerful. Oh, God could be all-powerful--and God is definitely more-powerful than any mortal being!--but God chooses to give us "free will"---the right to be wrong (if we so choose ... not to say "it's good to be wrong," but rather that 'we are good because we choose to be right!')

And God is patient in that God is 'willing to suffer our choice-to-be-wrong for as long as that choice (in this case that's "keeping God's glory for ourselves") is ours to make!'


  • Posts: 129
    We have a saying that patience is a virtue and one who waits is rewarded in the end. Well, if patience means willingness to suffer then I don't see anything wrong because the pain of suffering is lesser when there is a willingness or acceptance of the situation. Like in a car on the road which is locked by a heavy traffic, your temper will rise but when you accept that fact and you are willing to suffer then your mood is not ruined at all. 
  • Posts: 31
    @Corzhens: So it's not "a form of despair" so much as an 'option to it'?---instead of 'focusing on the pain,' your mind merely 'acknowledges it and focuses on healing/peacefulness/etc.'

    Kinda like when Jesus says "Suffer the children to come unto me." He's saying 'don't worry about them (when He's there to care for them, anyway).' And I guess that also goes for anyone of His Disciples to care for the children.
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