The Gift Of Patience

Saturday, July 2, 2016
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Listen while you read: "O Canada"1 (Lyrics)

This past couple of years has been a struggle for me. My rapidly deteriorating arthritic hips and knees have made it difficult for me to function as usual, and now, I have recently had a total right hip replacement. Instead of thanking God that there is an option to medically repair these joints, I am struggling with the fact that I am grounded for the next six weeks while the joint settles.

Imagine how annoyed God must be with me to see my lack of appreciation for what He has done for me!

Galatians 5:22-23a – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. (NIV)

James 5:7-8,10 – Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord's coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord's coming is near. Brothers and sisters, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. (NIV 2011)

As much as I pray for patience in this situation, my old self cries out, "It's not fair! How can I be a good witness when I'm stuck in the house?" One of the fruits of the Spirit is patience, and I seem to have misplaced mine of late!

However, with continued prayer and the help of the Comforter, I am working to receive God's incredible gift of patience. I do trust that He has a plan for all of this and will reveal it to me in His timing.

John Milton's poem, On His Blindness, inspires me:

    When I consider how my light (eyesight) is spent
    Ere half my days in this dark world and wide…
    But patience to prevent that murmur soon replies…
    They also serve who only stand and wait.

My burden is temporary, and I pray that God will give me patience, and enable me to be gracious in my inactivity and perhaps to be an example to you, my reader, or to someone like myself who has trouble sitting still.

Prayer: Most gracious Father, I pray that You will give me the grace to accept Your gift at Your time and trust that "all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28 KJV). Amen.

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About the author:

Karen Abbott <>
Renfrew, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Good bless Karen. Thanks for sharing.

    Karen, thanks for sharing the lesson drawn from this experience. Blessings.

    I never, never pray for patience, Karen. I wish you a speedy, complete recovery. Hang in there.

    They also serve who “sit” and wait!! Rest dear one. God is not annoyed at you. He understands.
    May God heal you each day (Isaiah 40:31).

    Oh my goodness, Karen, it doesn’t require a hip replacement to cry out for patience!!! Thank you for your good words and reminder.

    Karen, I confess I sometimes long force period of “enforced rest,” but the smarter part within me knows I would last about two days before starting to “lose it.” Your devotional challenges me to work on patience NOW, before I have no choice!

    My dear Karen:
    May our very great Lord bless you with His peace. That peace that passes all understanding.
    I’ve been where you are. God has a reason why He wants you to be still for awhile. Ask Him what you can do while you are recuperating… maybe a prayer warrior.
    I pray you heal completely and quickly.

    Hi: Your devotional today is just what I needed. I have been trying to avoid surgery as I have been told in the past I have a hard time waking up after surgery. I suffer lot of pain and I always feel tired and worn out. I found your devotional brought me some job and my husband says it is just what we need to hear as I go to the specialist soon to see what he has to say. I do not like the idea of being laid up for six weeks but again I must have patience. Thank you for your devotional.

    Hi Karen
    I relate
    I have various issues and, being a type A control freak, I have learned to asks the Lord for help when I wake up, as I did this morning, stiff an sore all over.
    He has supplied a wonderful chiropractor who helps not only with treatments but homeopathic remedies that help a lot. Today I said Lord I can hardly move. What do I do first,. “Get up, now, and scoop the kitty litter” Ouch. But doing the litter involves bending and stretching. And of course that loosened the muscles a lot.
    The Lord always has answers!

    Hi Karen,
    I lead a Bible Class at the local Long Term Centre, and on one occasion some years ago, we were talking about patience, and one of the residents, well in her 90s at the time, said:
    Patience is a virtue, possess it if you can, It’s always held by women, and never held by men! But that is actually not true.
    We have several people we pray for and one of our requests in many cases is that they are giving patience.
    Thank you for writing,

    Karen, I can empathize with you insofar as I had surgery in January. And while it has been healing nicely I am still not very mobile, and in the process of having to use a cane I have run into other problems.
    Of course in my limited wisdom, I have felt somewhat annoyed that I haven’t been able to do a lot for the kingdom, being housebound as you are. However, God, in His loving mercy assured me that writing to glorify him was equally as important, if not more so, than being physically active.
    So I have come to the conclusion that when He chooses to ‘make me to lie down in green pastures’, it is then that He has the opportunity ‘to restore my soul’.
    Hope this might alter your perspective and give you fresh blessings.

    Good Morning:
    You mentioned in your meditation on today’s Presbyterian Daily, July 2nd, that you felt impatient because you were laid up with a hip replacement and couldn’t leave the house and witness for God. Well I am sure that you witnessed to many, (including me) today. Thank you for your thoughts and for your inspiration to be more patient. I try very hard to be patient but am waiting for surgery and the waiting is difficult because it is painful to walk around and I too am hindered in the things I would like to do. It seems there are steps everywhere that I want or have to go these days.
    Thank you for your thoughts. I pray that your hip will heal quickly and you will be out and about very soon.

    Greetings Karen,
    I trust that you can see the small progress each day moving forward!
    Yes, you indeed have to be patient, and to give thanks that we live in a country where Medicare is affordable….the healing process will pay off in the long run speaking from experiences.
    It is now six years, and I am waiting for the Lord to help me make the right decision as to weather I deal with my current situation or risk having a knee reconstruction that may not result in a positive.
    I am patiently waiting…
    So six weeks is not long at all in my humble opinion, be patient, and you will see the end results will be amazing.
    Stay bless and stay strong in your faith.
    Thank you very much for sharing this devotion.

    My friend in Christ,
    Having read your devotional for today, I hear a deep need for prayer and hope. I too have had to learn to slow down, take things very slowly.
    There was a time when I was able to take on so much, then came, out of the blue, major heart surgery which took away my ability to breath, walk any distance, even from my chair in my lounge to the kitchen became a hard thing to do. Suddenly I had to sit still and let my husband fetch and carry for me. A roll he does with joy, Praise our Lord. So, I had to find something to keep myself busy.
    I learned to write stories.
    Just any idea that God put into my mind, I wrote on my computer. This gives my brain something to do, that way I don’t feel impatient with my uselessness.
    Thank you for your thoughts of needing patients. We all do. I pray that this note will be of some help to you as you wait for your hip to get mobile Blessings.

    Be patient.

    Karen, if you have to do the other hip, insist on the anterior procedure.
    I used a walker one day, carried a cane five days and was cleared to resume normal activities. I attended my church’s strawberry social the day after the operation and sang in the choir the next day. My first replacement was the same as yours.
    (Florida, USA)

    Today I read your devotional and am praying for you. Several years ago I had cancer and fortunately all I need to do is take my little pill each morning. For years I have swam almost daily and could not swim for several weeks thus really was anxious for time to pass. Swimming then continued which helps my arthritis and am able to walk well.

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