“When we ask God for something, we know that He can do it. Nothing is beyond His control or ability. Yet even if we know that He will do it, we want it done right now. We hate waiting. Our struggle is not so much lack of faith, but lack of patience.”
Ever since my friend mentioned this insight at our young adult Bible study, I have pondered her words. What does faith look like when accompanied by patience? As I studied the Bible more, I learned the astounding truth that faith often is patience.
When Abraham and Sarah were promised a son of their own, they had to wait 24 years to see the fulfillment of this promise. Did they doubt that God was capable of performing the promise? No. Hebrews (11:8-12) recounts that they knew God was able to revive the fertility of a man and a woman who had passed their child-bearing years. But why should the fulfillment take so long? They must have asked themselves that question many times.
We ask the same question. I have watched so many young women struggle with their faith because of their lack of patience. “But I’ve prayed and prayed for a husband for years! Is God even listening?” Some accept mediocrity because they believe that the excellent thing they pray for is too long in coming.
If the Lord answers our prayers within the time frame we hope for, what need is there for faith? In such a case, faith becomes the expectation of a spoiled child, and no longer the walking out of an active trust in the Lord. When we face temptation or long delays, perhaps the reaction of true faith is exhibiting patience.
What if our patience proved our faith?
None of my life has gone the way it was "supposed to go," but I don't love my life any less because of the hardships and new directions. I see so much unexpected good in it, and I want others to see the good in theirs.