Galatians 5:22-23 AMP
“But the fruit of the Spirit [the result of His presence within us] is love [unselfish concern for others], joy, [inner] peace, patience [not the ability to wait, but how we act while waiting], kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.”
The word longsuffering is translated from the Greek word “makrothumia” which means longsuffering, patience, fortitude and forbearance!
It is one thing to suffer, but long suffering is taking it to another level. Long suffering is bearing with the offences and provocation of others without fighting back. It is bearing and going through all the troubles and difficulties of life without murmuring and submitting cheerfully to every dispensation of Gods providence. It is being patience with a good attitude.
You might be thinking; how is that even possible? Well, honestly speaking, it is not humanly possible but with God all things are possible and with the help of the Holy Spirit this is possible. Think about Saul, he who once persecuted the believers. He is stoned and left for dead, he is shipwrecked, he is bitten by a viper, he is imprisoned, he is whipped, he is arrested several times but the man just keeps on going, planting churches everywhere God leads him and he does not complain one bit! That is longsuffering!
Now if we were to be honest with ourselves that is something that is lacking in many of us today. Any time we go through a season of difficulty, or when we have to wait and exercise patience, we complain and we begin to doubt the love of God for us. We are so used to instant tea and coffee, microwaves, instant money transfer and all manner of instant things that we expect the things of God to work in the same manner. We no longer have an appreciation for the process forgetting that the process is what causes growth and change in us.
The interesting thing is this, when we are dealing with others, we are so impatient and we don’t want anyone to tell us about longsuffering, we cry out for their blood and we want to call the fire from heaven down on them. On the other hand, when we are the ones who need mercy, we expect others to be very patient with us
For the Holy Spirit to give us the fruit of longsuffering, it means we shall have to bear one with another and we will go through hardships in our lives.
In your troubles and hardships, don’t complain, don’t doubt God, be patient with others and pray that the fruit of longsuffering be developed in your life.
Are you good at waiting and what kind of attitude do you have when you experience delays that are caused by others inconveniencing you? What one thing have you ever had to wait for and it seemed like God was taking his sweet time, what lessons did you learn from the experience? God will sometimes bring people in our life to test our patience and long-suffering, do you have such a person in your life? What’s the situation like?