“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.” (Galatians 5:22)
One of the main definitions of the word long suffering is that it is referring to patience. And patience is another sorely needed quality in the fast paced world in which we live in today.
Just watch people standing in line at the grocery store or at your local fast food restaurant and watch how short some people’s fuses are today. Road rage is still a problem on some of our highways. Look at someone the wrong way and they will want to try and take your head off. Many people have been killed or seriously injured because someone lost his temper over something that was very trivial.
With the fast paced ways of our society, many people have had their fuses shortened up and it thus takes very little to set them off. As a result, many people have very little patience operating in their personalities.
For Christians, this poses a major dilemma. One of the ways of our God is that He is a very patient and long suffering God. His ways are not our ways. And one of the things you will find out very early on about His ways is that He works on a much slower time frame than we do. And unless you learn to adjust to His slower way of working things out – you will find yourself easily losing your patience with Him and how He wants to work things out in your life.
God operates on a much longer and slower time frame than we are used to operating in the fast paced world in which we live in. You will really have to work with the Holy Spirit on this particular quality to get it properly worked up into your soul. The reason for this is that your own impatience will start to act up and try to override the patience and long suffering that the Holy Spirit will try and transmit to you. At times, it may become of battle of wills – your will against His will.
From Hebrew4Christians.com site:
But once the Holy Spirit starts to try and manifest this quality up into your personality, then you have to try and move with it and allow it to get worked into your mind and emotions. If you do, then His patience will start to override your impatience, and before you know it, your fuses will start to lengthen and you won’t lose your patience like you used to do.
Longsuffering is virtually the opposite of anger, especially of “outbursts of wrath” (2 Corinthians:12:20). Anger usually involves a spiteful attitude of retaliation and revenge. But God forbids this: “Bless those who persecute you . . . Repay no one evil for evil . . . do not avenge yourselves” (Romans:12:14, 17, 19). The Bible teaches mercy and forgiveness.
Here are the different definitions for the word long suffering:
- Forbearance, patience
- An attitude of mercy toward wrong doers
- Patient endurance and steadfastness under provocation
- Forbearance under ill-will, with no thought of retaliation
- Patience, endurance, steadfastness and forbearance
- Forbearance under suffering and endurance in the face of adversity
- Ability to endure persecution and ill-treatment
With the way all of these definitions are reading, you can really see why we all need the patience and long suffering of the Holy Spirit to start operating in our souls and personalities – especially when we are forced to have to face any kind of adversity. Sometimes it will be the patience and long suffering of the Holy Spirit that will be the only thing that will give you the ability to last the entire length of a storm cloud or trial.
Learn to ride and flow with the patience of the Holy Spirit in your daily life and walk with the Lord – and you will then be able to enter into a much more restful and peaceful state within your mind and emotions.