One Ministry, One Church, One Message Worldwide
Anyone who has had any kind of a relationship with another person knows how much work can go into making it succeed. Successful relationships make life enjoyable, but maintaining one requires taking into consideration factors such as personality, emotional maturity, and past experiences. There are bound to be disagreements occasionally, but we persist through the tough times and patiently work things out. Patience is a godly trait; using it when dealing with family and friends allows God to bless our relationships.
We live in an impatient world with an “I want it now” mindset. Our relationships with others will thrive only when we move away from this way of thinking and take the time to work out differences of opinion. Arguments and disputes can be discouraging, but we do well when we consistently consider the other person’s point of view. “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not”(Galatians 6:9). Patience in our relationships brings us to that “due season” when we reap the benefits of once again being at peace with others.
Patience is one way we show love for another person the way God instructs. When we operate in love, we find the strength to endure to keep the relationship moving forward even when the other person disappoints us. “Love is patient and kind…Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance” (1 Corinthians 13:4, 7, NLT). Displaying this type of patience with someone else is impossible through our own efforts; we need God’s help to do this.
Being patient isn’t simply putting up with or tolerating something; it’s remaining constantly, consistently the same in all circumstances. We can disagree with someone while still showing them love and patience. “Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love” (Ephesians 4:2, NLT). No one is perfect, and everyone make mistakes. Employing this godly trait is more effective in resolving disagreements than losing our temper.
Anger, contention, and strife can destroy friendships and damage family relationships; they are to be avoided at all costs. Negative emotions can drive a wedge between people, but we fight those emotions by deliberately using patience. “The end of a thing is better than its beginning; The patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. Do not hasten in your spirit to be angry, For anger rests in the bosom of fools” (Ecclesiastes 7:8, 9, NKJV). We end feuds and arguments by wisely resisting the urge to react in anger, and instead consistently responding in love.
Most people don’t understand the power of being patient with someone else. It’s a sign of strength, not weakness. When we don’t see eye-to-eye, it’s easy to get angry or pressure them to see things our way; it’s more difficult to persevere in love to reach common ground. “Through patience a ruler can be persuaded, and a gentle tongue can break a bone” (Proverbs 25:15, NIV).
Maintaining successful relationships is no secret; all that’s needed is the godly wisdom to treat others with love. Deliberately choosing to overlook the negative and focus on the positive goes a long way. “A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense” (Proverbs 19:11, NIV). Patience in dealing with others can be the glue that keeps our relationships intact and prevents them from splintering. Being wise in this area benefits everyone involved.