Signs of the Times

Topic: Patience and Its Reward [Rev. James Reid, D. D., in the British Weekly, London, England]

Patience is not one of the showy virtues. It is not the kind of thing for which people are praised. We may commend a man for his kindness, his generosity, his courage. But his patience will go unnoticed, and it may be the best of all his gifts. Christ [Jesus] was always telling his disciples to be patient and to cultivate the power to wait. Many of the New Testament letters also might be said to have this as their central theme. For the big temptation of many Christians then was to be in a hurry, to get quick results. They longed for a speedy end to all the conflict with evil. When it did not come, they were tempted to give up and to go back. What they lacked most was the power to wait.

All the best fruits in life ripen slowly. The finest things all take time to grow. Nature refuses to be hurried. The seed in the earth must pass through all the stages one by one before it becomes grain. There are no short cuts to the harvest. It is the same with great works of art. The great cathedrals have taken centuries to build. Even today, with all the modern machinery to help, the men who plan them must have infinite patience. They must often be impatient to see the completed building. But work that is to last cannot be hurried. All the best things take time to grow. There are no short cuts to real success in anything. The man who achieves it must see ahead and have the power to wait.

June 4, 1938

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