by Tammy Phillips
April 13, 2021
Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial, which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; (1 Peter 4:12)
God has an answer for everything. He knew that there would be people who would “try our patience.” Know anyone like that? Perhaps, your spouse, not mine of course! Could it be your mother? Father? Brother? Sister? Children? Co-worker? Boss? Congress? President?
The Lord answers before we ever call for help on this one. He gave Paul the solution in Ephesians 4:1 (AMPC), “I therefore, the prisoner for the Lord, appeal to and beg you to walk (lead a life) worthy of the [divine] calling to which you have been called [with behavior that is a credit to the summons to God’s service…”
How is our behavior? Is it a credit to the summons to God’s service? Almost everyone I talked to in the past few days were having their patience tried by someone. How about you? How did you handle it? How did I deal with it, you ask? Did I breathe in Jesus and blow out Satan? Hmm…Let’s get some more advice from Paul. He tells us to handle it like Jesus:
“Living as becomes you with complete lowliness of mind (humility) and meekness (unselfishness, gentleness, mildness), with patience, bearing with one another and making allowances because you love one another.” (Ephesians 4:2 AMPC)
Let’s look at a few translations to see help us clearly see what Paul was really saying:
Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. (Ephesians 4:2 NIV)
With tender humility and quiet patience, always demonstrate gentleness and generous[b] love toward one another, especially toward those who may try your patience. (Ephesians 4:2 TPT)
Always be humble and gentle. Patiently put up with each other and love each other. (Ephesians 4:2 CEV)
Be patient. Love one another. Put up with each other. Many times, instead of putting up with each other, we want to put each other out! Right? Yesterday, one friend put it like this:
“I want to line them up. Run the back of my hand across the right side of their face. Then I want to come back down the line, slap the left side of their face with the palm of my hand. Then I want to blow on them and watch them all fall down!” Ever feel like that? This friend was done with everybody. I quickly got off the phone and wrote this encouragement for her. (LOL).
A final word of encouragement, I love how the Message Bible interprets Paul’s word in Ephesians 4:14:
“While I’m locked up here, a prisoner for the Master, I want you to get out there and walk—better yet, run!—on the road God called you to travel. I don’t want any of you sitting around on your hands. I don’t want anyone strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere . And mark that you do this with humility and discipline—not in fits and starts, but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences. You were all called to travel on the same road and in the same direction, so stay together, both outwardly and inwardly.
I think that just about sums it up!
I enCOURAGE you to keep on walking in and by faith. Follow in Jesus’ footsteps. Love well, even those who get on your last nerve. “Be eager and strive earnestly to guard and keep the harmony and oneness of [and produced by] the Spirit in the binding power of peace. (Ephesians 4:3 AMPC). This is so much easier said, than done. However, me and the peeps in my world, old friends and new ones, need to hear it. Remember, I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO GIVES ME THE STRENGTH, including loving the ones who get on my last nerve.