Patience. I'm still learning these lesson time and time again.
I never seem to learn it the first time, or the second, or the one hundredth. This has always been an area I've struggled in and I feel like it'll always be an area I struggle in for the rest of my life. As I continue to grow, I've started to notice a lot of areas in my life in which I can be impatient in: driving, with others, with the Lord's timing, school, marriage. It's difficult when it seems so easy to take things into my own hands and do things how I would want to do them.
So generally, the root of all my impatience is attributed to selfishness. I want things done in accordance to my plans, my time, my preferences. It's rather horrible. It's even more horrible when I start to justify my selfishness in my mind. Somehow, in some way, shape or form, I manage to justify my selfish actions.
Submission. I'm still learning this as well.
I'm learning to submit to the God-given authority in my life, even when I still don't understand everything. It's hard to submit when I don't see any concrete evidence for reasonings. It's hard to submit when I think I'm right. It's hard to submit with a happy heart, or a heart of obedience. It's hard to submit when I feel like I've given every reason possible to pursue something and yet the answer is still no.
Again, the root of my unwillingness to submit with a happy heart is rooted in my selfishness. The wanting of my own desires and fulfillment of my ideas. I would say selfishness makes it very easy not to submit to the God-given authority in my life.
As I ponder all these things, I can't help but think of how sinful I am in my though process in both patience and submission. It does come down to my pride and selfishness. And when I think this way, I'm ashamed. I'm ashamed because I remember Jesus' example and ultimate display of submission to even death on a cross. Here I am, having such an ungrateful heart and discontentment in the little things, but not like I had to experience God's full and complete wrath to punish sin. It's because of Christ that I have been made right in the eyes of God. I've been forgiven of all my sins. It is because of Christ's death on the cross that my soul is counted as righteousness and holy. So then I look at myself and reflect on my own attitude. Why do I justify my selfishness to not be patient or submissive? It's the easy thing to do.
JP was gracious to point me to Christ and reminded me that submission doesn't only occur when it's convenient or easy. Submission happens when its hard, when it doesn't make sense. And to submit to the God-given authority of my life because it brings glory to the Lord. The Lord is teaching me patience and submission constantly and it's a battle every time. But it's by His grace and mercy that I can continue to push towards patience and submission. It's by His strength that I can and have accomplish what I've accomplished. I just pray that the Lord would be glorified in every aspect of my life: thought, word, and action. I pray that He would give me the endurance and humble attitude to act patiently and to submit with a happy heart.