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Be patient, not only with respect to the main trials which beset you, but also under the accidental and accessory annoyances which arise out of them. We often find people who imagine themselves ready to accept a trial in itself who are impatient of its consequences.

--By Francois de Sales

Every Good Gift
...A Father's Testimony of Learning Patience
One day I was wrestling with a friend when my ankle twisted broke. I had surgery and a few days rest, but I recovered. At the end of my hospital stay, I really noticed how skinny my legs had become from lack of use, and I discovered how the body shrinks when it lies dormant.

You know, that law of nature applies to our bodies and minds, and also to our spiritual lives. This is depicted in Matthew 25, the parable of the ten talents. If we are faithful stewards, we will be trusted with more blessings.

Second Peter 1:3-11 describes the spiritual laws of addition and the resulting promises: “...giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; ...and to temperance patience; ...that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ…” The steps from faith to patience seem simple enough at first, but maybe a personal illustration will help you.

I used to live a worldly life, until I surrendered myself to Jesus. In faith I studied the Bible, along with health principles. As my knowledge increased, so did my experience.

The most dramatic discovery came after a severe ear infection. The doctor prescribed several antibiotics, which didn’t help. Finally I suggested that it might be caused by allergies, and the tests came back positive. But the only hope they could offer was tubes for my ear, and a lifelong prescription of liver-destroying drugs. I declined, and searched the Lord for answers.

I decided to take personal responsibility for my environment, and give special attention to my diet. I made some changes, but I still showed signs of agitation, which impacted my family. I had a very short temper which I couldn’t explain, and my family didn’t deserve unwarranted outbursts.

During the six-month period, my health did improve, and it turned out that the culprit was cheese and other dairy products. I never knew I was lactose intolerant, but I was overjoyed to know; and in so doing I found one of the keys to patience. The spiritual “law of addition” became a reality to me. The knowledge of health led to temperance in my eating habits, temperance let to patience, and I was a changed person.

I’m still learning, but I caught a glimpse of James 1:3 -- “...that the trying of your faith worketh patience.” You see, my faith was exercised and strengthened through a physical dilemma, and with diligent effort I was rewarded with patience. The trials of life are God’s method of character perfection, but we should use the intelligence He gives us to prevents unnecessary burdens. "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God."

~By Mr. Robert J. N. of MN; Submitted for HW, Vol. 46

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