"I can't wait to have patience...hurry up, hurry up, HURRY UP!"
Those were the lyrics to this song that my parents used to play basically ALL the time throughout my childhood. It was back in the age of cassette tapes and station wagons and tape recorders with little microphones attached to the side....
The premise of the song was that this little girl was going to get a brownie for dessert. Her parents give her the brownie and tell her to wait to eat it so that she won't burn her mouth...of course the lure of the brownie's ooy gooniess is too much to take and so she quickly sneaks a bite... and of course burns her tongue.
I think after a while I got what they were trying to say. I was not the most patient of children (which I inherited from my father) and I am absolutely not the most patient of adults. In fact, this is probably one of the things that I STILL struggle with most in every area of my life.
My impatience mostly kicks in during uncontrollable situations and circumstances. These could range from stop lights that seem to be taking all day to change to super long check out lines to cupcakes taking FOREVER to bake. Heck, there are even days when I am convinced that automatic doors are slowing me down! I used to think that I was only situationally impatient and when it came to people I was willing to offer a lot more of it...
That is until I met people that were under two feet tall and two years of age.
Call me crazy but as MUCH as I love these little precious kidlets that I nanny for, they know JUST how to drive me insane! I can't help but think they were born with this talent. Usually by 10:00AM I have repeated the phrases "don't throw your food, eat it," and "we don't throw fits to get what we want" about ten zillion times...the results being tear stained faces, screaming children, and a food covered floor...and a nanny near ripping her hair out.
And while we're on the subject....WHY DID I BUY A PUPPY!?
Again... I ADORE this furry little mess of a puppy that I have deemed Lincoln, BUT there are moments when all I want to do is lock myself in the closet and ignore everything that he chewed/digested when I finally emerge. And don't get me started on potty training!. He barks and barks and BARKS to tell me that he has to go outside...so I take him and then he has to sniff every single inch of pavement/patch of grass and drag me up and down our cliff of a hill about 12 times before he finally finds a spot worthy enough of his bodily excretions.
Needless to say...P A T I E N C E is a lesson God is ALWAYS trying to teach me and that I am clearly not getting considering that he is always dropping little "opportunities" to help me improve in this area.
And then there is the subject of patience in my relationship with God. They say God always answers our prayers just not always how we would like....sometimes his answer is no, sometimes yes, and sometimes wait. I mean when he asks me to wait, I would rather just DIE! That may sound a little dramatic...but people...this is my WEAKNESS here.
Anyways. All this to say that lately I have been at the end of my rope and in need of more alone time than I have ever craved in my ENTIRE life. That whole locking myself in the closet scenario I mentioned earlier actually sounds good to me quite often.
BUT, while I have not quite conquered this lack of patience in my life and I am not sure that I ever completely will, I am aware that still I am learning and more thankful than ever for the grace and patience that my God has with me. It never ceases to amaze me that he has enough patience for me each day. Because let's be honest....I am nothing more than that defiant kid to him over and over again. And this week we have agreed to run on HIS strength.
Often times I wait until I am at the end of my own strength to ask for his. How silly. Perhaps I should just realize right away that I won't ever have enough to handle it and I should just rely on all things him to begin with. I think my frustration level would stay a lot lower on most occasions. And this week I am constantly reminding myself that NEVER does he give me more than I can handle...though sometimes I think that our radars are a little off...but when it seems as though we are nearing that breaking point he is right there to carry some or ALL of it if I will only ask him and let him.
So here I am 20 something years later still trying to let that silly little song sink into my heart and my head...and I've adopted some new lyrics for this stage of patience learning in my life...I'll leave you with them...
"This is the stuff that drives me crazy, this is the stuff that's getting to me lately
In the middle of my little mess, I forget how BIG I'm blessed,
It might not be what I would choose, but this is the stuff You use."