The Surprising Patience of God

Exodus 34:6-7;
Nehemiah 9:17b-25

“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”
(2 Peter 3:9)

My husband likes to say that if he’d written the Bible, it would be a very short book: “God makes man and woman, Adam and Eve sin, they are blown to bits, the end.” This tells you he is not a patient man!

But God is very different from my husband, or any of us in His astounding patience and long-suffering love. If God forgives you once, you are glad and grateful. When He forgives again, you are slightly embarrassed and perhaps determined to try harder. What happens when you struggle with the same besetting sin for 15, 20 years, or more? What if you really want to change but can’t? This is what it feels like to be the prodigal child over and over again – to rebel and sin grievously only to find your Father watching and waiting, longing for your return. He does not wait grudgingly with disappointment and anger. Instead, He rushes to embrace you and celebrate the repentance He has given you for the millionth time! Through our struggle with sin, we come to understand and experience God’s surprising patience.

“The multiplied pardons the believer receives increase his admiration of… the mercy of the covenant. He loves much, for much has been forgiven.”
(John Newton)

Source:  Anchor Devotional

I am very thankful that we worship a very patient God.  His patience may seem surprising to us, especially when, as a parent it is sometimes very hard for you to exercise patience with your child.  There are times when you feel like throwing in the towel because you have had enough.  Your patience reaches its limit and you give into anger, frustration, etc.  There are times when they do something that upsets you so much, that it’s hard for you to forgive them.  It affects how you interact with them.  When you find yourself doing this, the next time they let you down, just think about how God has been patient with you and all those times He has forgiven you when you come to Him in sorrow and shame, seeking His forgiveness.  When your child comes to you, sorry for what he or she has done, forgive.

There will come a time when God’s patience will reach an end but that is when it is time for Jesus to come again.  In the meantime, God wants as many people as possible to repent and turn from their sinful ways so that they could spend eternity with Him.

Thank God today for His unfailing love, mercy, compassion, forgiveness and surprising patience.



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