Patience is a quality which has been frequently misunderstood, and for this reason has not been properly valued by the human race. It is, however, of vital importance in the journey from the material sense of existence to the spiritual understanding of reality, and should be cultivated. When properly understood, patience is seen to be not merely the suppression of irritation and control of bad temper; these may be steps on the road to patience, but they are very far from that quality as it is understood and defined in Christian Science. It is not an apathetic state of inaction in the face of difficulties; neither is it a state of stagnation, inertia, or resignation. No. Patience is a vital, active, unconquerable quality which rests upon the knowledge of the all-power of God, and therefore enables one to hold steadfastly to the truth of being in face of any seeming difficulty.

Throughout the Bible can be traced the effect of the acquisition of patience in the lives of those who are depicted in the various narratives. Moses in his earlier years was not a patient man, as witness the impetuous slaying of the Egyptian; but in studying his experiences one sees how he grew gradually from a state of impatience and self-distrust to that calm, spiritual vision which enabled him to lead a people from the bondage of materiality and worship of matter to the understanding of the truth expressed in the words, "The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms." How patiently he strove with the Israelites in helping them to gain a greater faith in God's goodness and power!

In "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" (p. 515) Mrs. Eddy has written, "Patience is symbolized by the tireless worm, creeping over lofty summits, persevering in its intent." From the study of this sentence much can be learned that is helpful. There is no self-righteousness about patience; it is tireless and ever active, surmounting all difficulties and reaching heights unknown to mortal mind.

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Awakening to Trust in God
November 5, 1932

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