'Hanging on'

Wednesday Reflection

12th August 2020

'nodding their heads in agreement!

'But if we hope for what we do not see,
 we wait for it with patience.'
   - Romans 8:25

I am not the most patient of people.
I can imagine those who know me who are reading this
nodding their heads in agreement!
I do try to be, but it just isn't easy.
I don't wait for someone else to reach things too high for me,
even though they said they would;
I want it NOW,
so I drop things sending them crashing to the floor.

While clearing up the scattered fragments of that glass vase I loved,
a thought came into my mind.
God was teaching me a lesson I desperately needed;
faith without patience falls short.

At first, I too, am prone to trust God's Word.
I believe, if he says it, he will do it,
as Hebrews 10:23 says;

"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess,
 for he [God] who promised is faithful."

But trusting God to keep his promises requires
more than just confidence;
it requires endurance as well.
Maybe that's why God's Word reminds us over and over again
that faith and patience are partners.
One without the other can leave us dangling in discouragement.

Faith gives us the determination to trust God's Word;
patience gives us the resolve to trust his timing.
In today's key verse, the apostle Paul writes in his letter to the Romans,
'But if we hope for what we do not see,
 we wait for it with patience.'  (8:25)

The original word in this verse for 'patience' is 'hypomone'.
It paints the picture of a person holding on,
persevering and refusing to give up.
This particular kind of patience could be described
as 'hang-in-there' power.

Patience is what keeps us holding on when
it seems like God is not listening.
It's what keeps God's mysterious timing from undermining our faith.
Waiting on God isn't easy,
but, with patience, it is possible.
Hope is necessary for life,
hope with patience will keep us focused on the task at hand.

A few of Paul's concluding thoughts, in the book of Romans,
seem very fitting for today's thoughts,

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy
and peace as you trust in him,
so that you may overflow with hope
by the power of the Holy Spirit"
   Romans 15:13

I don't know what you are waiting on today.
But I am absolutely confident that God's word can be trusted.
So, if you are struggling, hang on in there.
Keep believing!

On the other side of all the waiting is a promise fulfilled.
And when we see with our eyes what our faith had believed,
there will be reason to celebrate.