By Roy Burner - Minister of the Gospel
Patience during adversity is a trait that is of great value in a time when adversity is becoming common place. Patience is persevering through problems, trials, and tribulation; quietness or possession of one's spirit under such conditions; and forbearing offenses of others.
Scripture reveals that one is to recompense no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men. Avenge not yourselves, but rather give place to wrath. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good (Romans 12:17-21).
We are living in a time that Biblical teachings are not valued as they once were. There is a flow of hateful language striking out as a venomous snake seeking to destroy. There are those who have no patience during adversity rather an attitude of hatred. It is a rare; often a godly individual, who countermands with well-chosen; not venomous, words and actions.
For one to be drawn into a wrongful attitude; then allow it to fester, is like the expression of going out of the frying pan into the fire. Scripture reveals: As a man did flee from a lion, and a bear met him; went into his house, leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him (Amos 5:19).
James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ instructed that every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God (James 1:19-20). Patience during adversity requires such an attitude; because talk often inflames anger, and anger inflames talk.
Man's actions and words are now captured in an electronic world that holds one more accountable than in the past. Oftentimes one's facial expression denotes the mannerism that is being presented. Again, the words of James: The wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God (James 1:20). The righteousness of God was to be manifested rather than adopting the ways of the world.
In the teachings of Christ; He instructed one to do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you (Matthew 5:44). If your enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst give him drink (Romans 12:30). In so doing, one can turn adversity into advantage, and triumph over adversity, rather than become enslaved by it.
A Chinese proverb reveals: The diamond cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials. Adversity will come; when one stands for the truths of God's Word, how one handles that adversity comes through a solid relationship with Christ and adherence to His Word.
A Bible dictionary indicated that the natural response to adversity is to attempt to flee from it. Often adversity makes one bitter instead of better in their association with such. It is not merely one's presence in such trials but one's victory over them that brings spiritual growth and maturity.
Scripture reveals: Now the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded one toward another (Romans 15:5). The striking out of a venomous nature does nothing to promote Christianity while patience can help the cause of Christ who died for all of humanity.
Patience during adversity is good-natured tolerance; a rare quality in the day of venomous hate filled speech with an attempt to demote the character of another. Patience is the power of suffering with fortitude; as one is strengthened by the Lord. A French proverb reveals that patience is bitter but its fruit is sweet.
Sometimes it is difficult to have patience during adversity; of holding one's tongue, with one's instinct being to leash out but again the admonishment in Scripture: For one to be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God (James 1:19-20).
Scripture reveals that the believer in Christ is to give all diligence, adding to faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge self-control; and to self-control patience (or perseverance); and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity (or love) (2 Peter 1:5-7). He that lacks these things is blind, and short-sighted, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins (2 Peter 1:9).
The believer needs to remember when God reached down in His love and mercy to bring one out of their sinful condition (1 Corinthians 6:11). Then one will not be so hasty to leash out at another who is perceived an adversary. Patience during adversary is a valuable tool when such is in remembrance.
Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, in speaking to those that are sanctified (or set apart) by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, revealed that there will be mockers in the last time; who walk after their own ungodly lusts. Those who separate themselves, worldly, having not the Spirit of God.
But you, (the believer) building up your most holy faith, praying in the Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life. And of some have compassion, making a difference: and others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire (Jude 1:18-23).
Jude indicated that there would be those walking after their own lusts, with their mouth speaking great swelling words, having men's persons in admiration (Jude 1:16). But one is to have compassion on them; patience during adversity, even when they say all manner of evil against you.