My mother always told me that I never had patience when it came to things I wanted. That was many decades ago; I have learned patience now. I no longer feel powerless when I see things that are wrong in God’s world, at least what I perceive to be wrong. I have learned to manage my emotions, seeking freedom from human feelings such as envy or anger. With God’s help, I try to manage my emotions into positive words and actions.

Sorry, I digressed; much of my learned patience has to do with others. I begin by saying something good about all whom I meet; I invalidate other voices that condemn a person because of color or gender. But I do realize that what the other person feels is important to them and therefore to God and then it must be to me. My patience allows those I disagree with to voice their opinions. Hopefully, discussion will then follow.

I recently was in a group discussion on blessed and good communities in church settings. I spoke against the genderization of God. God is not human, and we must teach our ministers to eliminate the masculine use of He when referring to God; I also stated that men could be upset with the term She. I emphasized that there are so many praises and biblical names we use for God that we can eliminate all genderization.

I have gained patience from my ever-present closeness to God. I am blessed by God’s patience with me; I pray that I share that patience when dealing with my brothers and sisters who share God’s blessings. God sent Jesus into this world to lead us to perfection. We are not as strong as Jesus, but we can embody His patience within us as we offer our patience to others.

© Russell Kendall Carter

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