(Below are Jessica's thoughts on Chapter 20 "Don't make me wait for anything; I deserve everything immediately." Wilderness Mentality #5 of Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer. We'd love to hear your thoughts on this chapter as well. Feel free to leave a comment, question and/or scripture in the comment section below this post. Let's join together and fight this battle!)
I don't think many of us are walking around saying, "It's OK if my child's breakthrough comes a year or two from now, we are happy to wait." Most of us have endured extended periods of trial and difficulty and are ready for that breakthrough now. I know I am! Joyce Meyer points out a very important point about patience being a fruit of the spirit. We can't practice or have patience until we learn to act this way while under trial.
This was a major stumbling block for the Israelites. They simply could not understand why God had to lead them through trials and did not take them directly to the Promised Land. In His perfect wisdom, God led them through these trials so that they would be ready to possess the Promised Land from its current occupants and take hold of the blessings God had in store for them. Many missed out on their promise, simply because they did not have the patience to see their journey through. I don't know about you, but I don't want to miss out on my promise like they did!
Back to the patience being developed under trial, I really appreciated Joyce's honesty about what else gets brought out before you get to patience. She shares with us that "pride, anger, rebellion, self-pity, complaining, and many others" had to be dealt with before she could display patience. (p.231) I am learning not to feel bad every time I fail and wish I had been more patient in a given situation. I am to be thankful that the Holy Spirit showed me an area where I can improve with God's help, so that next time it won't be so tempting to be impatient. These trials that we all face can be valuable teaching time and we can emerge not only stronger in our Christian walk, but as a better example to others.
Often when I open up this book, it as if God is speaking directly to me. This week was no different, as soon as I saw the title of the chapter I thought, "Yep, this is a lesson for me!". I am believing God for an incredible breakthrough. There are times when I feel so positive and strong and times where I am just exhausted. The lessons in this study are helping me to cast down negative thoughts or temptation to give up in my weak moments. Joyce Meyer teaches us that the battle is waged and ultimately won in our minds, so I have decided to do everything I can to keep a good attitude until I see what God does next. I like the way Joyce puts this on page 230:
"I remind myself that patience is not my ability to wait, but my ability to keep a good attitude while I wait."
Waiting sounds very boring, but in our lives it is very active. We are fighting the good fight, keeping up with specialists, diets, supplements, educational goals and whatever else our family needs to function well and thrive. We do all of this and more, full of hope and positive expectation that we will see our promise come to pass. We do this fully believing that our faith and diligence are seen and will be rewarded. Most of all, we do this because we are loved by our Heavenly Father, who unfailingly has our best interests at heart and sent his only Son, Jesus, to lead us to eternal life.
Bible Verses from Chapter 20:
Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains.
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.