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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Your Favorite Jeans

From Respectable Sins: Confronting the Sins We Tolerate by Jerry Bridges, pages 116-

...we can put on our "Christian face" outside the home, but with our families, our true character often comes out. This is especially true in the two areas of sin we will look at in this chapter: impatience and irritability.

...I am going to define impatience as a strong sense of annoyance at the (usually) unintentional faults and failures of others. This impatience is often expressed verbally in a way that tends to humiliate the person (or persons) who is the object of the impatience.

...the actual cause of our impatience lies within our own hearts, in our own attitude of insisting that others around us conform to our expectations.

...Above all, we need to acknowledge and repent of our impatience as sin.

...irritability, as I define it, describes the frequency of impatience, or the ease with which a person can become impatient over the slightest provocation. The person who easily and frequently become impatient is an irritable person.

Are you upset with someone or some circumstance a lot of the time? If  so, you may well be an irritable person. If you are frequently upset with another person (or persons), you may need to learn to overlook their unintentional actions...if love covers a multitude of sins, how much more should it cover a multitude of acts that irritate us.

Jean says:

Ouch! This one really hits close to home, Lord. I don't mean to be mean to the people I love. I don't mean to be impatient, but I am at times. Usually when I'm really tired, I think.

Or when I'm frustrated because things aren't going as planned.

Or when time is running out.

Or when I'm trying to do too many things at the same time.

Or when I'm doing something I MUST do when I want to be doing something else.

Or when I'm surrounded by confusion.

Or...

Wow! It sounds like I'm one of those irritable people Mr. Bridges describes in his book. Forgive me, please.

Lord, Father, help me! I don't want to be irritable with the people closest to me. I want to give them the same respect and gentleness and patience I give to total strangers.


God says:

Love is patient, Little One. [1 Corinthians 13:4]

Patience is one of the expressions of the fruit of My Spirit dwelling in you. [Galatians 5: 22-23]

Patience goes hand-in-hand with humility and gentleness and forbearance. [Ephesians 4:2]

I want you to slip into patience and wear it often, Little One, like your favorite jeans. [Colossians 3:12]

Actually, patience is much better than those jeans. It's always comfortable, always durable, and always fashionable.