Learning Patience

I am not a patient man. Never have been. I hate to wait, especially if waiting on others.

There are those who pray for God to make them patient. Right now.  I am not sure that I am in that category because deep down I am not sure that I really want to be patient.

To be fair sometimes it is right to be impatient. In fact, on occasion it is virtually immoral to be overly patient. Must we not be impatient with a world in which a child dies of preventable causes every few seconds?  Should we not be impatient with a global economic system which keeps some people dying of hunger whilst others struggle with obesity?  How can we fail to be impatient of injustice?

However, most of the time we are patient with things with which we should not be patient and impatient with people with whom we ought to be most patient. The truth of the matter is that most of us could benefit from learning a little more patience. There is no shortcut to learning patience, of course.  It can only be learned as we wrestle with issues that we fervently wish would take less time.

One of the benefits of a 5YP is that it requires one to learn a little patience. That you are undertaking a project that will take 5 years to complete provides an inherent challenge to a culture of instant gratification.  Moreover, that you almost inevitably wish to acquire more items than the budget will allow (apart from the lottery winners out there) means that you have to learn to be patient.

A patient man might identify a wardrobe item in year 2 that he will not be able to acquire until year 5.  And there are some items that may take even longer. A patient man will not settle for a lesser item simply because he can have it now; rather he will wait until the circumstances are right and the various elements are in place to be abel to acquire the appropriate item for his needs.

For me that is one of the upsides of a 5-year project.  It teaches me how to a little more patient. . God knows I need it. However, that this is an upside does not for a moment lessen its challenge.

Ironically, as I was typing this post my computer ran into a little trouble and I needed to download the latest software updates to resolve it.  Predictably, it took far longer than ideal and I was virtually chewing my fingers off in frustration.  Yep, I’ve still got a way to go on the patience-learning front…

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