Sunday, November 19, 2017


by Andrea Noles
the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.

Silently now, we wait for thee.
We surrender our impatience, our hurry, our desire to do.
Father, we ask for your truth to fall upon us.
May your goodness and your glory impact us today.
We are slow learners and you teach us with your perfect patience.

Isn’t she beautiful? Perfect shape, fun design, and home for the world’s finest drink.

My patience mug, made by Rae Dunn, has a story to tell. A story of patience, pride, and a few sips of peace.  You may want to settle in a bit for this one. Grab a blanket and a warm drink. This is not for the faint-hearted.

My husband and I began graciously passing the mug back and forth, joking that whomever drank from the mug, would be granted a day full of endless opportunities to taste the most trying fruit of all the spirit… patience.

The mug quickly made its way to the dark side of the cabinet, was pushed behind the popular  “blessed mug". Cause don’t we all just want a fresh cup of blessings. They are so much easier to manage.

I have a sweet teacher friend who pours her heart and soul into her work. We often pass each other in the hallway, shine our “I’m makin’ it” face, and wish one another well. Two weeks ago, our paths crossed, and she whispered, “don’t pray for patience, don’t pray for patience.” CAUSE DON’T WE ALL HAVE ENOUGH WISDOM BY NOW NOT TO INVITE PATIENCE TO OUR TABLE.

Shortly after, I heard another whisper. Not from a teacher, or a student, but from the beautiful voice of the Spirit.

“Andrea, patience is exactly what you need to pray for right now.”
“Take your mug with you, wherever you go, and take me too.”

So I listened.
I pulled my mug from the darkness, washed her off and...
I asked for it, and boy did it come.
Overflowing, to the brim, caffeinated tests of pure patience.

Opportunity started knockin’.

Every stoplight- Opportunity
Literacy students- Opportunity
Family- Opportunity
Appointments- Opportunity
Technology- Opportunity
People reminding me of things I’ve forgotten- Opportunity

Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.

Yes, Lord, this verse is true.

But I felt like it should read, “Ask and it will be given to you, seek, and you will find, knock and the door will fling wide open and hit ya when you walk through it."

As I struggled through a few days, I asked various friends what “patience” meant to them.

No one answered too quickly. Most stared at the sky and said they needed a minute.
I heard…

It’s a virtue.
It’s an art.
It’s steadiness.
It’s waiting.
It’s pausing
It’s a song by Guns N Roses.
It’s a fruit.

Technically, it’s the ability to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering, without getting angry or upset.

I asked God if I could really do this? All day, everyday?
And what I’ve learned is… is that I can’t.


He can.
When I am patient, I am choosing to respond like Jesus.
When I am patient, I am displaying the joy that Jesus brought.
When I am patient, I spread peace like a river, just like Jesus did.

When I choose patience, I choose Jesus.
When I choose Jesus, I choose patience.

Oh Lord, help me choose you.
Let’s pause for a moment and turn to a story in scripture that reflects the heart of Jesus.

Luke 10:38-42.

Listen and read this aloud.

Now as they went on their way, Jesus[a] entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to his teaching. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” 41 But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things,42 but one thing is necessary.[b] Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”

Do you see?
The good portion was presence. The good portion was patience. The good portion was Jesus.
I want this for us, friends.
I want the Mary life.
The life that lets the Master lead.
I want to sit and listen. I want to remember what is necessary.
Father, make us willing to walk the patient path.
Turn down the worry and hurry in our hearts, and replace it with your patience.
May our mugs be filled with better responses, soft answers, and a willingness to wait.

Teach us Lord.

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