Tales corner-Patience: Our Lost Virtue
It is no more news that the world has changed and it keeps on evolving. Humans now have virtually everything at their beck and call. Any information you need is a minute away, all you need to do is to connect to an internet server. While this is available, there are some improvements over time, we migrate from 1G to 2G, 3G, 4G and even 5G. We want to get what we need within a minute.
You can pass information to anyone anywhere in the world without stress. Domestic chores have been made easy. You have the washing machine, the dishwasher, the microwave, amongst others. What more, no need to go through the stress of shopping. While sitting on your sofa, your legs crossed on the table and a bottle of coke beside you, you can shop for whatever you need online. These items are delivered within the shortest possible time. Life is cool and easy. Without doubts, ‘Thou shall not wait’ seems to be the new and trending commandment of the globe.
However, this instant fulfillment and provision of human needs has brought with it a disadvantage. Have you noticed how annoyed you get when the network is slow and you cannot connect to the internet? Have you noticed how irritated you get for having to queue up at the ATM stand in the Bank? Notice you get angry when you order a meal at a restaurant and it’s not ‘fast food’? How angry you get when you have to wait for a friend for awhile at the bus stand? Have you noticed your frustration when God does not answer that prayer quickly? Have you noticed how angry you get when the salespersons delay in attending to you at the shopping mall or market? When our lives become guided by a rule of ‘thou shall not wait’, patience is thrown out of the window, a lost and forgotten virtue.
Due to technological advancements, we no longer need to wait for anything. Permit me to wear my ‘Preacher’s robe’ and be God’s minister for a few seconds. God is patient, the Holy Book says so. He is slow to anger, extends his grace to sinners and saints alike, and gives humanity a long time to repent. Recall that when Jesus came down in form of a human, he spent 9 months in the womb and 30 years acquiring knowledge which we know he previously had by the virtue of him being God. Paul, the disciple also called on the Colossians to live differently by the world including being patient. So why can’t we imitate God whom most of us believe in?
What more, patience helps you to build a lasting relationships with other individuals. Remember no man is an island. You need to interact with other humans and maintain a cordial relationship with them. No matter how reliable those gadgets may seem, they might disappoint you someday. Even if they don’t, they surely cannot provide you with everything. Be patient with people; do not murmur because you have to wait a minute or two for something. Do not be that person that is always frowning because of a little delay. No one wants to be around that guy who always screams at another person over a little mistake resulting from delay, or that guy who complains all the time because he is impatient.
Before you get me wrong, I’m not proposing that life should be difficult or that people should not go for the things they can afford to help make life easy for them, I’m not asking you to boycott all the gadgets that have made life easy, but a thread with caution. Don’t throw away patients because almost everything has become easily accessible. Who knows, it might come in handy someday, in some situations and you realize that you have fed yours to the dogs and even gave them water to drink and digest your patience.
A patient dog eats the fattest bone; sometimes it is true. Impatience makes people to take wrong decisions on an issue, make the wrong choice, and even marry the wrong person. Impatience has also cost a lot of people their jobs, relationships and friendships. Most importantly, it has made people not to maintain a good relationship with God.
Remember, we are created in God’s image. Thus, we should be filled with patience. So, next time you want to scream at your friend for keeping you waiting, next time you want to grumble and murmur about queuing up to withdraw cash at the ATM or wait to be attended to by a salesperson (who is perhaps busy with another customer), next time you want to contour your face to the extent that you could pass for the devil if we attach the horns, simply because you have to wait for a bus to get filled up at the motor park, next time you have to wait a while for whomever: the cook at home to bring your food, or you have to wait for items you purchased at the mall to be packaged, next time… remember the revolutionary act of being patient and wait. Smile while you wait.
Learn to be patient with others and your relationship with them will improve tremendously.
Never forget, none of us is leaving here alive!