Patience (Is a Virtue)

“Yep,” I declare, while crunching my last mouthful of buttered popcorn. I now have Mom’s attention from across the table, so I continue my train of thought—“What I am tasting (pointing to my mouth still full of food), is telling my brain (then pointing to my forehead), ‘This is what you have been smelling!!’” As if Sherlock Holmes himself solved the mystery. I could have left the profoundness of the whole ordeal with that simple revelation sentence, but I blurb a few sentences on the note that my brain intelligence could be something that some psychologists might not be able to comprehend. Sometimes those prideful statements come out of my mouth without realization…even if it was a funny one.

One day has led to another and as January ended, today I saw how different puzzle pieces fitted together with something else I said after my MRI. Only a few days after my MRI, I started being open with my family about things on my heart and mind. We weren’t even initially discussing any particular health topics at first, but soon it came about and in an honest sentence, I say, “This disease is teaching me patience,” and without a moment’s hesitation I quickly add, “And I haven’t won that battle yet.” Indeed, even still waiting for MRI results, I have found myself impatient…more at unrest, I suppose—even though I will not be surprised by any news at this point and am at peace with other areas of decisions made beforehand as well. Up until this season in my life, I do not think I would have thought much about everyday patience—my own, much less others who care for me—or maybe it is now that I see how much patience from others I have missed, because I have taken it for granted, like a routine. It is no piece-of-cake to offer my own self substantial patience some days either. How much more patience then from others.

“Painting’s not fun anymore if you can’t do it yourself,” I gripe last week as I am restarting painting. I didn’t mean it, but the words still came out of my mouth making me feel bad right after I said them. It was yet another time that I saw patience in action and I was being humbled by it, knowing that Mom had plenty of other things she could be doing besides opening my paint tubes. Truth is that painting is more fun with someone—painting parties. I simply let my outside frustrations blind my view of this. And the more my body changes, the more I see this happening. I even told a friend when she visited for coffee and cookies, “I don’t want to be grumpy.”

Yesterday’s sermon was about Roadblocks to Joy. I had been emailed the notes, so Dad and I enlarged them to where I could read. Stapled ten pages later, I enjoyed the sermon—first in a long time. We were encouraged to read Philippians and see the roadblocks in our path. In finishing my coffee this morning, I found mine: patience, in my words and actions.

Love is patient. I Corinthians 13:4


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7 responses to “Patience (Is a Virtue)

  1. Dear friend. You are allowed, permitted and encouraged to FEEL all those joys and concerns. Yes, patience is a virtue, but there is nothing like a primal scream when needed to let it all hang out. You”ll feel better, somewhat, and it doesn’t hurt anyone.

    • mel

      Thank you for this reminder as well. Often when I need those screaming moments, I go to my room and cry. I guess the need for both leads to a better balance, and I should cast out guilty thoughts. Though I do desire to seek more patience. 🙂

      • Michelle

        ❤ It has been a while since I have read your posts but I thank God for you today. Keep plodding in patience sister.

  2. Shelia Bower

    Thank you Melinda!!! I ALWAYS need a reminder in Patience! It is something I struggle with daily!

  3. Kim Jenerette

    Melinda …. my perspective on you is this … you are like the beautiful swan … only you (and our Lord) know of the churning occurring both within and below (the surface) … but from my perspective, you are a clear example of Christ-likeness … we love you.

    Uncle Kim and Aunt Lisa

  4. Mindy

    I can definitely say that I struggle with patience – especially having 4 children who have their own way of thinking and maybe not seeing eye to eye with me. Hope you’re having a great week!

  5. Karen Tucker

    Oh, Melinda, I’m the one that really needs to work on patience–and I’m much older than you! Thanks for sharing from your heart and encouraging me today.

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