Galatians 5:22 – The fruit of the Spirit is patience.

Patience is a direct result of peace.  In fact, you really cannot have patience unless you’re walking in peace.  We begin to see how the fruit of the Spirit is singular and cumulative. In other words, one part of the fruit leads to another.

James said, “Count it all joy when you encounter various trials” (James 1:2).  True character is formed in the trenches.  An older friend who is a minister was listening to a younger man talk about his own ministry experiences.  The older minister was intently looking at the younger man. The young minister asked, “What are you looking at?”  My friend answered, “I am looking for the scars.”

The Scriptures teach, “The testing of your faith produces endurance” (James 1:3).  In the King James Version, endurance is translated patience.  I am grateful for all the difficult times I have known in my life although, at the time, I did not like it one bit.  Today, I can see how the Lord used tests beyond my strength, and wounds too deep to heal without His grace.  Each trial became a new challenge to overcome, an instrument of the discipline of God’s great love.  I now know each trial and wound helped to form Christ in me.  I like what Paul said, “Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-15).  In this verse, Paul captures the essence of what patience is about.

Paul was a man who knew rejection, prison, and beatings.  He was misunderstood and was even left for dead.  Yet, he never lost sight of the goal; he never turned back and gave up.  He cried out to the Lord three times for help.  After the third time, Jesus spoke to Paul and assured him that His grace was sufficient.  The Lord told Paul that “His power is perfected in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:8-9).  Today, those words are for us as well.  Determine to be a man or woman of patience.  Ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen you as you walk through the various trials of your faith. Ask the Holy Spirit to give you grace sufficient for each situation that comes your way.

Pray, thanking the Holy Spirit for being your helper in all things.  Verbalize that you submit your weaknesses to Him.  Ask Him to help you receive patience out of every trial so that His character would be manifested in your life.