"...was reminded while reading Genesis 1 that if God created the world in six days, I need to stop doing everything in one."
I posted this on my Facebook page yesterday and was surprised by the amount of feedback I received...I guess I shouldn't be surprised that I'm not the only one trying to take on all I want to accomplish in the world in one day, everyday, and finding myself frustrated when I get little more than the kitchen cleaned up and the toothpaste back in the drawer.
Why are we such impatient people?
I was reading the early chapters of Genesis this week and was surprised that the concept of patience kept reasserting itself as the word, or impression God seemed to be trying to leave me with. If you had asked me what the lessons of the creation and flood story were I would have recited something to you about original sin and God's punishment because of it. That is not what I learned at all, and that is what I love about the life that God's word can take on when you open yourself to it.
Here are the impressions I came away with:
1. God created the world over a period of time, focusing on one group of tasks each day. Really?!! This is not a new fact for me, just a new realization. God is God and I often picture him with a great big wand and the ability to wave it and have what he wants done instantaneously.
The fact of the matter is that he likely could have created the world in one day. I don't know that for sure, but God can do anything, right? So there is something more to the story here...something we may not know during our lives on this earth. God chose to take his time...perhaps he was enjoying the process of creation, wanting to make sure it was just right and in the process serving as an example to his created that things don't always happen instantaneously.
Sure fast-food, and microwaves, and wi-fi, and airplanes and all sorts of other things lead us to believe otherwise...but I can attest, especially as the mother of two small children, I place a LOT of expectation on myself to make things happen at a quick pace and have been feeling pretty tired and frustrated because of that lately...last I checked frustration wasn't listed as one of the fruits of the spirit...
2. God put Noah on a boat for a long period of time, not to frustrate him, but to save his life. I was trying to add up the amount of days Noah was on the boat...I didn't come up with an exact number, but there was 40 days of rain, and then 150 days of the water just sitting on the earth, and then weeks before the water receded...The patience lesson I learned here was that we need to trust where God puts us, at certain times in our lives; that the place may actually not be to frustrate us, but to help us or save us in some way.
This hit me because I have been feeling nudges of discontent lately. I miss New England, I miss being able to drive to Boston...even though I grew up in Buffalo I haven't been convinced lately that I'm super happy to be back in Buffalo. That said, I haven't really been asking God what he may have for me in Buffalo...maybe it's just a chance to exercise patience, maybe it's an opportunity to strengthen relationships with my family, and maybe, if I'm just patient, there is even something more to the plan that I cannot see right now. Whatever the case may be, I need to trust that God knows the boat I'm on right now and that he can also see the bigger picture.
So, that's it for now. My thoughts on patience and my impatience.
I'll end with two quotes on the subject that made me smile, hopefully they do the same for you:
"Patience is something you admire in the driver behind you and scorn in the one ahead of you." (~Mac McCleary).
"You can learn many things from children. How much patience you have for instance." (~Franklin P. Jones).