His Patience Means Eternal Life
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9).
We are not very patient people. Particularly in the “got-to-have-it-now” culture in which we live. We want results, and we want them now. And when they don’t come, we ask that all important question, “How much longer?”
This is true on the spiritual front as well. We are not very good at waiting on the Lord. Why haven’t you answered my prayer? When are my troubles going to end? How long, Lord? How long do I have put up with this mess down here? How long do I have to keep fighting the good fight?
We forget that God is up to something down here and that He has involved us in His plan. Paul, writing from prison, shared his heart on this matter: “If I go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet, what will I choose? I do not know! I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body” (Philippians 1:22-23).
Paul understood God’s patience and he knew what it meant for others: “Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom the God gave him” (2 Peter 3:15).
Think about this in terms of your own salvation. Before I trusted Jesus Christ, I was a mess. I tried to be good, to be God’s guy, but it never worked out. The things I wanted to do, I didn’t. And the things I didn’t want to do, I did. I was expecting God’s punishment at any time.
But I received something much different. By grace, God saved me and made me alive together with Christ. God’s patience toward me meant my salvation. And the same is true for you. God was patient with you, and it resulted in your salvation.
As much as we may think that God is operating at a snail’s pace, He is not. He is patient. And that patience will mean salvation for many others just like you.
Think about your life. What were you like as a person before you trusted Jesus Christ? No matter how far afield you got, God never gave up on you. He stuck with you through thick and thin. At a point in time, His love became real in your heart, and His patience toward you meant salvation. Pray that God’s patience will bear the same fruit in the lives of others all around the world.
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