Dream Word – PERSEVERE
Romans 15:5-6 Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. NKJV
‘Merry Makrothumia & Happy Hupomonee!’
I refuse to allow anyone to pray for me, that I would have more patience. I hate the patience most of my fellow believers wish on me, for it always reminds me of a reluctant acquiescing to depressing disappointment, or a soul-shattering suffering, or a worthless waiting of some kind and most of all, a wimpish acceptance of a neverending and fun-less frustration! That kind of patience, thank you very much, you can keep!
To compound my refusal of such patience, one ancient commentator remarks that, “Patience is that calm and unruffled temper with which a good man bears the evils of life.” What rubbish and when I get to heaven I am going to find that brother and slap him! For you see friends, such silly and unruffled remarks, actually dehumanize the Christian, actually make us less biblical, less like Christ and sometimes force us into such an unreality, that it morbidly moulds us into a kind of religious madness! Remember, that when the winds of life sweep down onto the sea of Galilee, it heaves in disappointment, crashes against the shore in anger, slaps its waves together in desperation and weeps its salty lament across the watching shores and in the same way dear friends, in the same way, you the cruelly betrayed, you the hurt and disappointed, you the robbed and rubbished Christians of this world, are allowed to be that sea. Unruffled indeed! What poppycock! That’s not biblical patience, it’s dehumanized, dysfunctional madness.
In all your venting hurt and in all your disappointment though, what you are not allowed to be, is a deserter of Christ. What you are not allowed to be, is an unbeliever in His goodness. What you are not allowed to be, is one who turns his back on all the duties of His love. What you are not allowed to be, is a teeth gritting and angry charlatan, kicking the sheep of His pasture. What you are not allowed to be, is miserable, unfocused, faithless and hopeless, and I tell you this, without God's gift of ‘ Happy Hupomonee’, real biblical patience, you shall most certainly become and do all these nasty things.
Thank God that He is patient! Indeed, He is all patience! His ‘Merry Makrothumia’ (one of two Greek words we have translated as patience) that is, His long forbearance and faithful fortitude in holding back the pouring out of His righteous, hot and burning cup of molten anger upon us all, allows us time and affords us opportunity to change our minds and our direction and return to Him. God is happy to exhibit this longsuffering and forbearant patience with humanity because the end of it, is both our repentance and His shared and singing joy. How wonderful! We have a patient God.
Thank God that He is patient! Indeed, He is all patience. His ‘Happy
Hupomonee’ (the second of two Greek words we have transalted as patience) is a gift He freely gives His children, for as His ‘Merry Makrothumia’ is related to His love, ‘Happy Hupomonee’ is related to our continuing hope. Now this hopeful patience is one I both need and want, is one I both like and practice. This hopeful patience is one you can pray down from heaven upon me anytime dear friends, for this ‘Happy Hupomonee’ is not a miserable swim in the sea of Christian Karma, no! It is a warrior-like attitude, that rejoices in the attacks of the foe. It is a fruit bearing gift from on High, that flowers in the face of all adversity. It is a courageous and continuing persistence in well doing, when we’ve been well done at! Not only is this kind of patience, this kind of miraculous and joyful perseverance a gift to us, but it is an obligation for us to both put on and to walk in and in the so doing, we shall be found to be that most sweetest fragrance of heavens hopefulness, rarely found but greatly prized among the hosts of smelly and disappointed humanity. A truly patient people of biblical proportion.
I say again, that this truly biblical patience, this Happy Hupomonee is both encased in soulish humanity and expressed in spiritual faithfulness. So, let me patiently encourage you tonight then dear friends, that in all your expressed and sometimes violent storms, you remain focused, you remain faithful, you remain joyful, hopeful and you remain even apostolic in your continuing on with your mission! Now that’s biblical patience.
Listen: - Truly the signs of an apostle were accomplished among you with all perseverance, (Happy Hupomonee) in signs and wonders and mighty deeds. 2 Corinthians 12:12-13
Pray:- Lord, grant me this gift of warrior-like, joyful and focused endurance. Despite the wind at my face and the clouds above my head, help me to press on with the hope of reaping a fruitful crop. Grant me then this so great a gift and help me to put it on and walk in it, in Jesus name I pray, amen!