Dear Lord, please help me to be humble, patient and kind. I feel challenged by the difficulties of the world to love at all times. Please help me feel and project your love in all circumstances.
As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; Ephesians 4:1-6 (NIV)
I earn income by being a high school teacher. This year has been one of, if not the most, challenging years I have experienced yet, and I’ve been doing this teaching thing for over twenty years. I have students that are truly unmanageable. The only thing different each day are the problems that come up and what I try to do to deal with them. It is frustrating and aggravating on a level I’ve never experienced before.
When I read that the focus of today’s devotional was to be how a person who walks with Christ exhibits humility, gentleness and patience I laughed out loud because I could not imagine a bigger fraud writing this for you. The last thing I have felt the past few months is gentle and patient. Upon reflection, however, I realized that how I feel and how I act are not actually in sync together. I may FEEL impatient. I may FEEL that a rough response is what is needed. But when I reflect on my interactions in the classroom I realize that given the situations, my patience and gentleness has been off the charts. When I think about how that could possibly be there is only one answer: Jesus.
The truth is I’ve been walking with Jesus for seven + years, and even though there are times where it feels like I’m off the path, He’s always right there with me. Because of Jesus I’ve had the capacity to treat the most frustrating of students more like He would. I couldn’t do my paid job without Him this year. But more importantly, because of Him, when my time here is done, I have an eternity of perfection ready and waiting.
If you find yourself struggling to be humble, patient and kind know that you are not alone. It is not in our human nature to exhibit those characteristics. Fortunately, there is a perfect Savior who has modeled those traits for us, and if we accept Him and seek His help, we too can be patient, humble and kind to others no matter the circumstances. When faced with difficult situations sincerely seek His help. He loves to help.
Thank you Jesus for being the model of perfect love, patience and kindness. Thank you for showing me how to be like you, and thank you for your patience and grace for all the times I struggle.