The amazing patience shown by the father waiting and hoping for the prodigal son to come to his senses and return home is a beautiful picture of God’s patience toward us. God has been displaying his patience with all humanity ever since creation. The Bible tells us that in the Garden of Eden, at the dawn of creation, Adam and Eve enjoyed regular communion with God their Creator. But later, when Adam and Eve succumbed to the lies of the tempter and fell into sin, they actually tried to hide from God. Even so their loving Creator looked for them and waited for them to come out of hiding. Although sin had disrupted the fellowship they once had with their Creator, God graciously mapped out an amazing plan to redeem a fallen human race that would span thousands and thousands of years. It was a plan that required God’s only begotten son, Jesus Christ, to shed his blood and die for the sins of fallen humanity upon a cruel cross.

The Lord continues to wait patiently for people everywhere to respond to His offer of forgiveness and trust in Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. His patience continues in our own lifetime. The Apostle Peter spoke about God’s incredible patience when he wrote “do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” (2 Peter 3:8-9, ESV)

How has our Heavenly Father demonstrated patience toward you over the years? Have you thanked Him for being so patient? Is there some way that the Lord is calling you to extend more patience and grace to an obstinate family member, neighbor or friend? Remember the story of the prodigal son and how the gentle patience of that father was eventually rewarded. Our patient God is still in the business of changing hearts.

Dave Korinek
Congregational Care

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