Sunday, March 20, 2011

Learning Doesn't Stop

For me, the learning doesn't stop. I am constantly learning about myself, and what I need to do better in my life. Perhaps some may think I take life a little too seriously, but looking at how I can be better I feel is necessary for my growth, and therefore necessary for my happiness. Tonight, I was struck by an article by Neal A. Maxwell called Patience. Here are some quotes that I particularly liked:

"Patience is not indifference. Actually, it is caring very much, but being willing, nevertheless, to submit both to the Lord and to what the scriptures call the “process of time.”

Patience is tied very closely to faith in our Heavenly Father. Actually, when we are unduly impatient, we are suggesting that we know what is best—better than does God. Or, at least, we are asserting that our timetable is better than his. Either way we are questioning the reality of God’s omniscience, as if, as some seem to believe, God were on some sort of postdoctoral fellowship.

There is also a dimension of patience which links it to a special reverence for life. Patience is a willingness, in a sense, to watch the unfolding purposes of God with a sense of wonder and awe—rather than pacing up and down within the cell of our circumstance.

When we are impatient, we are neither reverential nor reflective because we are too self-centered. Whereas faith and patience are companions, so are selfishness and impatience.

It is so easy to be confrontive without being informative; indignant without being intelligent; impulsive without being insightful! It is so easy to command others when we are not in control of ourselves.

In our approach to life, patience also helps us to realize that while we may be ready to move on, having had enough of a particular learning experience, our continuing presence is often a needed part of the learning environment of others. Patience is thus closely connected with two other central attributes of Christianity—love and humility.

Very importantly, it is patience, combined with love, which permits us “in process of time” to detoxify our disappointments.

God’s attributes of omniscience and omnipotence no doubt made the plan of salvation feasible. But it was his perfect love which made the plan inevitable. And it is his perfect patience which makes it sustainable!

Patience is, therefore, clearly not fatalistic, shoulder-shrugging resignation; it is accepting a divine rhythm to life; it is obedience prolonged. Patience stoutly resists pulling up the daisies to see how the roots are doing!


I should have just copied and pasted his whole talk. I am again reminded of the importance of this message. The closer I think I am to being a patient person, the more I realize I am not. From the looks of it, I need to change my attitude about what I think when I hear the word patience. For me the word 'patience' has been a bad word...the hope is that starting now, I will look at the word to be more opportunistic.

1 comment:

Brenden+Nikki said...

I am horrible at being patient too (although I AM improving). Thanks for sharing that talk... That put patience in a perspective I hadn't considered and it made it totally understandable to me. (of course leave it to Elder Maxwell! He was so eloquent).

Love ya!