“Be patient, therefore, beloved, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious crop from the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. You also must be patient.” vss. 7-8a
Waiting for Christmas during Advent is not particularly difficult. Neighborhoods signal its nearness when the ladders come out and decorations go up. Even the smells around the household, cookies coming out of the oven and lefse hot off the grill, are clear signs that the 25th is fast approaching. It’s a calendar thing, a matter of crossing off days one by one, and as we mark time, Sundays pass, and before we know it, Christmas Day has arrived. Anyone can do it, and everyone does it! But at its core Advent isn’t about waiting for Christmas, it’s about waiting for the Lord, and that’s not a calendar event! James told his readers that such waiting would require patience, and he’s right. God is coming, and will change our lives, but we don’t have a clue about times of arrival. What’s worse, we don’t even quite know what to look for. James says it will be like waiting for a precious crop from the earth. It could even be like patiently waiting for the fruits of the Spirit—others have them–we can see the love, joy, and peace in their lives. And we want them too. If only they were available on demand–but they’re not! So it’s good when our very first fruit is patience. Because when we have that, the others will quickly follow.
Thought for the Day: When is patience most difficult?