How To Develop Godly Patience

How To Develop Godly Patience May 20, 2019

Sometimes, patience is the last thing you have in this fast-paced, frantic world, so here’s how you can remain patient when everyone else seems to be losing theirs.

What is Patience?

The dictionary defines patience as: the ability or capacity to remain patient; the state of endurance under difficult circumstances; and/or persevering in the face of delay or provocation without acting upon it. That sounds a lot like Job. In the context of being persecuted for being Christ’s witness, Jesus said, “Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also” (Matt 5:29). This doesn’t mean we don’t lock our doors at night or don’t take precautions, but we do not respond in kind. This was not talking about physical violence but about being insulted for His name’s sake. We are to turn the other cheek in the sense of not retaliating when we are insulted for our faith. That is the context of verses 38-42 because Jesus went on to say that “if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.” Clearly this is a command to go the extra mile for someone and not give “An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth” (Matt 5:38). A person who is being persecuted for living a godly life shouldn’t be surprised by persecution (1 Pet 4:12-19; 1 John 3:13)…the surprise would be that a professing Christian is never persecuted for their faith.

“I choose the appointed time; it is I who judge uprightly” (Psalm 75:2).

Drop the Gavel

In the 12th chapter of Romans, the Apostle Paul was writing to a heavily persecuted church in Rome, but he still tells them, “never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord” (Rom12:19). There are certain things we must leave up to the judgment God. The Psalmist understood that it was God Who would “choose the appointed time; it is I who judge uprightly” (Psalm 75:2). We do not overcome evil by getting even but we “overcome evil with good” (Rom 12:21b). Clearly, this means we “Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all” (Rom 12:17), with the understanding that God “will render to each one according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life” (Rom 2:6-7).

Biblical Patience

Patience is a powerful thing during tumultuous times. Solomon wrote that it is “With patience a ruler may be persuaded, and a soft tongue will break a bone” (Prov 25:15), and not by hard words spoken in anger, which only stirs up more wrath. Part of the difficulty with Christians today is that we are sometimes not very patient with one another, even though we are told to “encourage the fainthearted, help the weak [and] be patient with them all” (1 Thess 5:14), so may “the God of endurance and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God” (Rom 5:5-7). The only one I run out of patience for is the one who looks back at me in the mirror. He’s a handful in itself!

Jumping to Conclusions

When you’re waiting for someone or someone breaks a promise, we can sometimes jump to conclusions, and not always the best ones. For example, if someone didn’t make it in time to pick us up, we might think their being late is their own fault, but that’s not always the case, is it? A person that’s patient and loving will tend to believe the best in a person before assuming the worst. They know that “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (1 Cor 13:7). Love gives people the benefit of the doubt and does not think the worst in people. All too often I assumed that someone did something with evil intent or motives, only to find out later that this was not the case. I’ve repented of that and strive to avoid doing that now, but I know I am told to “Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains. You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. Do not grumble against one another, brothers, so that you may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing at the door. As an example of suffering and patience, brothers, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful” (James 5:7-11).

Fruit of the Spirit

The fruits of the Spirit are “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…”

Patience is not a gift of the Spirit but a fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22), and a fruit that’s interwoven through the other fruits, like “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another” (Gal 5:22-25). Jesus said you will recognize a tree by its fruit, and the fruit shows us where its root is, since “every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits” (Matt 7:17-20). Naturally, only a good tree produces good fruit and a bad tree, bad fruit. Jesus warned that “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven” (Matt 7:21). Time will tell if it’s godly fruit or wax fruit which will melt under the heat of persecution (Matt 13:20-21).


I’ve tried to focus on myself rather than others. That way I can be more patient with others. I realize that I cannot change people. Only God can do that (Prov 21:1), but I can change myself, and so I must be patient with others as the Bible commands, but I must also be patient with myself because our harshest judge is usually us! If I focus on being more patient with others, then others may be more patient with me. One thing that’s humbling is to know that before we trusted in Christ, “such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor 6:11). This means we are no better than anyone…just better off in our standing before God. Pray that those who are not yet justified through Christ that are reading this, might repent and come to saving faith in Jesus Christ today. In the meantime, be patient with them as the Lord was with us before we were saved.

Article by Jack Wellman

Jack Wellman is a Pastor and Prison Minister in the State of Kansas. Jack is also a writer at Christian Quotes and Senior Writer at What Christians Want To Know whose mission is to equip, encourage, and energize Christians and to address questions about the believer’s daily walk with God and the Bible. You can follow Jack on Google Plus or check out his book Teaching Children the Gospel available on Amazon.

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  • pud

    “I realize that I cannot change people. Only God can do that”

    Then why do you continue to write these infantile ridiculous absurd and false essays all the while maintaining your job as a professional liar and indoctrinator of children into your religious cult?

    “In the meantime, be patient with them as the Lord was with us before we were saved.”

    You mean “patient” like before your imaginary deity drowned every living thing? Patient like that?

    You are a walking contradiction janitor jack….you prove yourself wrong every time you write this rubbish. Your own book condemns you and demonstrates your delusional thinking every single time. I call you out on your lies and contradictions every time but you blissfully soldier on repeating the same babble over and over in spite of proof that you are psychologically disturbed. Google “cognitive dissonance” jack….there’s a picture of you there.

    • Susan Jane Elohim

      Please go see a therapist and stop lashing out at people you do not know on message boards.

      • pud

        What? Not on “block” again? What’s that, the 60th time you’ve said you were blocking me? More proof that you’re clinically insane. Now run along and sing your silly jesus songs for 10 hours and beg for forgiveness from the very sensitive invisible undetectable “patient” deity in your story book.

        • Susan Jane Elohim

          One last one for the road.

          I couldn’t resist. I know you have your “crazy” narcissistic armor on 6 inches deep.

          I hope you learn to love Jesus and start letting him make a difference in your life.

          The pastor is not your enemy. He may be your best friend and he prayed a hedge of protection around you.

          Have a blessed day!

  • Susan Jane Elohim

    Excellent topical study, Pastor. A lot of people have trouble waiting on the Lord. But it’s best to learn how to do that rather than charge in blind sometimes.

    I just came across Watchman Nee’s testimony on wikipedia:

    Conversion and training

    In the spring of 1920, when Nee was 17, Dora Yu was invited to hold ten days of revival meetings[10] in the Church of Heavenly Peace in Fuzhou.[11] After Nee’s mother attended these meetings, she was moved to apologize to her son for a previous incident of unjust punishment. Her action impressed Nee so much that he determined to attend the next day’s evangelistic meetings to see what was taking place there. After returning from the meeting, according to Nee’s own account:

    On the evening of 28th April, 1920, I was alone in my room, struggling to decide whether or not to believe in the Lord. At first I was reluctant but as I tried to pray I saw the magnitude of my sins and the reality and efficacy of Jesus as the Savior. As I visualized the Lord’s hands stretched out on the cross, they seemed to be welcoming me, and the Lord was saying, “I am waiting here to receive you.” Realizing the effectiveness of Christ’s blood in cleansing my sins and being overwhelmed by such love, I accepted him there. Previously I had laughed at people who had accepted Jesus, but that evening the experience became real for me and I wept and confessed my sins, seeking the Lord’s forgiveness. As I made my first prayer I knew joy and peace such as I had never known before. Light seemed to flood the room and I said to the Lord, “Oh, Lord, you have indeed been gracious to me.”

    — Watchman Nee, Watchman Nee’s Testimony.
    As a student at Trinity College, Nee began to speak to his classmates concerning his salvation experience. Later, he recounted:

    Immediately I started putting right the matters that were hindering my effectiveness, and also made a list of seventy friends to pray for daily. Some days I would pray for them every hour, even in class. When the opportunity came I would try to persuade them to believe in the Lord Jesus… With the Lord’s grace I continued to pray daily, and after several months all but one of the seventy persons were saved.

    — Watchman Nee, Watchman Nee’s Testimony.
    After his conversion, Nee desired to be trained as a Christian worker. He first attended Dora Yu’s Bible Institute in Shanghai, though he was still a high school student. However, he was dismissed due to his bad and lazy habits, such as sleeping in late. Eventually, Nee’s seeking to improve his character brought him into close contact with a British missionary Margaret E. Barber who became his teacher and mentor.[12][13] Nee would visit Barber on a weekly basis in order to receive spiritual help. Barber treated Nee as a young learner and frequently administered strict discipline. When she died in 1930, Barber left all of her belongings to Nee, who wrote:

    We feel most sorrowful concerning the news of the passing away of Miss Barber in Lo-Hsing Pagoda, Fukien. She was one who was very deep in the Lord, and in my opinion, the kind of fellowship she had with the Lord and the kind of faithfulness she expressed to the Lord are rarely found on this earth.

    — Witness Lee, Watchman Nee: A Seer of the Divine Revelation in the Present Age.

    Isaiah 40:25-31 Song “Those Who Wait on the LORD” (Esther Mui)

    Waiting on the Lord can be a hard thing to do for a person not naturally patient.

    • Won’t you be waiting on a non-existent being if you wait on that barbaric Yahweh, created by bloodthirsty and ignorant savages, in their own image? Watchman Nee won’t be able to help nor will the non-existent Jesus.( See

      • Susan Jane Elohim

        You’re on your own. I don’t trade golden ideas or relationships for garbage ideas any more.

        I am an evangelist and that makes me a life coach.

        So stop arguing with me and start listening to all the spiritual music until you repent.

        So you received some bad counsel. Everyone does but not everyone takes it to heart.

        So repent and start over and put your life in God’s hands. He’ll make someone out of you if you start paying attention to Him. Read Proverbs 4.

        Have a blessed day!

        Tell Your Heart To Beat Again, Danny Gokey

        I am about to go offline so I can lifecoach in person. So get your act together. You only have one life to live and the best lifecoach is Jesus.

        Repent and rejoin God’s family and refuse to listen to liars.

        Really who turns in Jesus on the say so of a bad bible scholar.

        You went looking for trouble so you could stay in it.

        But Jesus will give you a whole new life if you start paying attention to him exclusively.


      • Susan Jane Elohim

        More Than You Think I Am

        I am turning you over to God so go find Him.

        Be a genuine seeker now and don’t listen to rough people, y’ hear.

        Everyone suffers from confirmation bias. Some want to confirm good and some want to confirm sin (evil).

        So you will have to resolve to set yourself apart from the evil pack and go seek God yourself.

        You can’t build any decent relationships worth all your time and trouble until you do.

        Luke 12:29-31

        29And do not be concerned about what you will eat or drink. Do not worry about it. 30For the nations of the world strive after all these things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31But seek Hisd kingdom, and these things will be added unto you.

        Repent and go seek the Father now and He will add everything unto you in the time and place that He sees fit. You just love Him and obey Him and keep your garments clean.

        Nobody in his right mind settles for eating pig swill ideas like the prodigal son did.

        You have to ask God for discernment so you can sort the genuine people out from the bad ones and the same goes for ideas.

        Ask God to refne your mind and He will.

        He can make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.

        Nobody else can but HE can.

        I hope this helps. Listen to the music and don’t get upset and frustrated that you cannot understand everything God is saying. He’s building a new heart, mind and life in you and you have to be patient and learn to take things one day at a time like Jesus said on The Sermon on the Mount.

        May His Grace Abound To You!

  • Joshua Sonofnone

    Bro. Wellman,
    You are clearly one of the most patient, Godly men writing on Patheos blogs, considering the ungodly attacks leveled against you by Seminar Atheists and Atheist Parrots. May God continue to use you for His glory.

    • Jack Wellman

      Thank you Mr. Sonofnone for your encouragement, but any patience I have can only come from His Spirit (I pray) so all glory to HIm alone (Psalm 115:1).