Patience, Here and Now

We are spending these next few weeks looking at the Fruit of the Spirit as a way to answer Jesus question, “Do you love me?”  I offer this as a tease of some upcoming material in our worship experiences.

One of the Fruits of the Spirit is patience, learning the best things take time. We are a culture of the quick fix; who are tinged with a sense of arrogance we can fix anything now.  Some of us want to cultivate patience right now or at least at the end of this coming worship series.  Cultivation is a lifelong process.

Olive tree farmers know an olive tree will bear fruit in its 5th or 6th year, and doesn’t reach maximum yield until it is 30 or 40 years old.  When the olive growers plant an olive tree, they say a prayer: “God protect it and make it grow so that my children’s grandchildren will benefit from its abundance.”  That is patience.

I will not try to improve on Father Henri Nouwen’s words about patience.  “Patience is a hard discipline.  It is not just waiting until something happens over which we have no control: the arrival of the bus, the end of the rain, the return of a friend, the resolution of a conflict.  Patience is not a waiting passivity until someone else does something.  Patience asks us to live the moment to the fullest, to be completely present to the moment, to taste the here and now, to be where we are.  When we are impatient we try to get away from where we are.  We behave as if the real thing will happen tomorrow, later and somewhere else.  Let’s be patient and trust that the treasure we look for is hidden in the ground on which we stand.”  Imagine cultivating this kind of love of Jesus who loves us in patient and unimaginable ways.

I am headed back to nourish the field called my heart and soul; it needs a bit more cultivation and time to grow.

Published in: on January 20, 2011 at 8:50 am  Leave a Comment  
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