June 23, 2024

Is Patience a Virtue?

Written by Pat Elsberry

God has a long rope and is abounding in patience toward His children.”

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – June 23, 2024

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12

The phrase, “Patience is a virtue,” has been thrown my way, but I’ve realized it’s usually when I show impatience. I’ll be the first to admit this is an area where I’m a work in progress.

My husband, Fred, is the epitome of patience. We have been married for over 20 years, and I have only seen him lose his patience once, and thankfully, it wasn’t with me. I’m not impatient in general. My patience is mainly tested when I’m driving. I remember one time, I was running late for an important meeting and found myself stuck behind a slow-moving truck on a two-lane road. I couldn’t help but feel my patience wearing thin. It was in that moment that I realized the irony of my situation. I had prayed for more patience, and here I was, being given the perfect opportunity to practice it. I’ve come to understand that God truly has a sense of humor, and he’s developing patience within me, a journey of personal growth that I’m embracing. 

Jesus, during his time on earth, exemplified an immense amount of patience. I often reflect on the patience he had to show with Peter. As I’ve watched a few episodes of The Chosen, I can’t help but see a bit of myself in Peter. He wasn’t always the most patient man, and his impulsiveness got the better of him at times, but his intentions were always pure. This reflection inspires me to strive for personal growth in patience. 

Patience is intricately linked to the attribute of Mercy. Psalm 103:8-9 beautifully states, “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in mercy.” The word “merciful” here can also be understood as “patient.” Another word for patience is “longsuffering,” meaning it takes a long time to boil. This connection between patience and mercy is a profound insight that deepens my understanding of both. 

If you’ve ever been around someone with a temper, you know how difficult it is to live with that. We can all be grateful that God doesn’t fly off the handle. God has a long rope and is abounding in patience toward His children, showing us the importance of patience in our relationships.

“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices! Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil. For the evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait for the Lord shall inherit the land” (Psalm 37:7-9).


Jesus, your life is the perfect example of patience and mercy. I long to be more like you in all that I do and say. Thank you for making me into the person you want me to be.


If you find yourself in a situation where impatience begins to take over, take a deep breath and look up to Heaven. Just smile and imagine Jesus is trying to fine tune you for his glory.

Related Reading

Ecclesiastes 7:9; Proverbs 15:18; Ephesians 4:2; Romans 8:25

Worship Resource

Kari Jobe: Be Still My Soul


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