Impatient? Me???

Dear Readers: Are you a patient person? Sometimes I think when God created me, He forgot to give me patience. ( Lol ) …..which is ridiculous, I know, since God makes no mistakes—but I am deficient when it comes to that trait. And the world we live in today which flaunts instant gratification with fast food, instant access, high-speed internet, and speed dial, hasn’t helped my lack of patience at all.

But today, I learned a lesson in patience … from my husband. Ben has a bat-wing mower that he uses to mow down thistles and briers in the pasture so the cows can reach the grass underneath. His mower has seen better days, and one of the mower decks was rusted through, making it impossible to use. So … being the industrious hoarder of junk equipment that he is, he happened to have purchased an older mower to use for parts. He decided to combine the best parts of each and build a serviceable mower.

That’s when he ran into a problem. The hinges on the used mower were so old and rusty, they would not move. He worked for three days … yes, I said three days … trying to break them free by pounding, oiling, heating, cooling, and using any other tactic he could think of, but they refused to budge. And yet, even after all of that frustration, he still came into the house each time with an upbeat “Hey honey,” for me. Even though he was covered in oil, grease, rust and dirt and was tired from the ninety-five degree heat, he still had a smile on his face.

Now that, my friends, is a lesson in patience. My husband provides me continually with perfect examples of long-suffering and forbearance, and this is what I’ve learned from studying his personality.

1) Admit your impatience: Acknowledging I’m irritated with a person or situation is the first step to overcoming those negative feelings. Being patient is a mental skill. If I exercise it, it will get stronger.

2) Agree that patience is a choice:  I can choose to be angry or aggravated, which makes me irritated even more, or I can choose to be calm and tolerant. The choice you make determines your outlook on anything that happens in your life.

3) Accept what you cannot change:  Slow drivers are a nightmare for me, yet I can’t make them go away. I can ride their bumpers, honk my horn, yell out the window, or make faces and hope they see me in the mirror, but chances are, they won’t even notice my behavior. When you can’t change it, accept it. Ben would probably say “Relax. Enjoy the ride.”

4) Analyze the situation, and come up with something positive to say about it:  Being behind a slow car might save me from being involved in a wreck further up the road. If I can change my feelings of pessimism to optimism, I find that I’m much happier.

So, my dear friends, I’m trying to make my life happier and more pleasing to God by living my life with a tolerance for others and without complaint. I’m not saying I will always succeed because I won’t, but I’m trying … and I hope you will as well.

Patience: 1) the quality of being patient, as in the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like. 2) the ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay.

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