It is hard to be patient in the midst of difficult circumstances. You just want it to be over. Someone please fix this problem, resolve this issue, and let’s be done. You’re ready to move on, but nothing changes. The struggle continues and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight. So what can you do?
Thankfully James, the brother of Jesus, gets it. He understands and offers wise counsel for those who are suffering. And his first word of encouragement is to be patient (James 5:7,8). Yes, things are not the way they are supposed to be right now. But the current situation is not permanent. When the Lord returns everything that is wrong – everything – will be set right. Our hope as believers is that when Jesus comes again, he will heal, restore and make all things new (Rev 21:5). Let that sink in for a moment… Picture in your mind what life will look like when everything is perfect. It will be absolutely glorious!
So James revives our hope by lifting our gaze above the immediate struggle and reminding us of what is to come. Be patient. The season of hardship you’re facing is just that, a season. Like farmers, James says we need to remember the early and late rains depend on the Lord’s timing. So hang in there, the rains you desperately need will come in the Lord’s time.
Until the season changes be on guard against a grumbling heart. When hardship is prolonged, and hope is lost, it can lead to chronic discontentment. And when discontentment is left unaddressed it sours a person’s outlook and attitude, leaving them bitter. So be patient, says James. Look beyond today’s trials to a glorious future, trust the Lord’s timing and don’t lose hope.