Today is Saturday, October 19, 2013.
"Patience with others is love. Patience with self is hope. Patience with God is faith!" –Mhar
Mhar is a first name, so that could be anyone. Some places on the web attribute this quote to Adel Bestavros, but I can't figure out who he or she is, either. This looks suspiciously like the work of good old "Anonymous." Such a smart fellow...
I wasn't quite sure I could buy into the quote until I thought about it for a few days. Here's what I got out of it. Your mileage may vary.
Patience with others is love. We exercise patience with others when they don't meet our expectations. This is especially true when adults are dealing with children, but it's also true when we are teaching another person something new, or allowing our teenagers to selectively taste the freedoms of adulthood. We are patient with elders who ask us for the same information over an over, and who endlessly repeat stories of their youth. Having patience with others in these instances doesn't mean we are satisfied with their performance or that their behavior is acceptable. It means we maintain our high expectations, but recognize that nobody is perfect, especially the first time they try something new. Patience allows us to accept the other person as he or she is right now, even as we hope for a different outcome in the future. In this sense, patience with others is truly a form of love.
Patience with self is hope. The time when we have to be the most patient with ourselves is when we are doing something new, such as starting a new job, learning a new skill, or forming a new, positive habit. In other words, it's necessary when we are making changes in ourselves and our lives. Patience with ourselves means that we don't consider ourselves to be a klutz when we have just tried to ice skate for the first time. It means that we don't label ourselves stupid just because we don't completely understand the very first chapter of the chemistry textbook. It means that we refuse to beat ourselves up when we go back to an old, negative habit instead of staying on course with a new, positive one.
Patience with God is faith. How many times have we asked the Creator to bring something into our lives, only to have our hopes dashed? How many times have we asked God to fix a problem or make it go away, and had to deal with it, anyway? Many times, the reason we lose patience with God is because we want our egoistic expectations to be fulfilled in a certain way, without considering what outcome might be best for all in the situation. We forget that the problem was self-created because of something we did, because we lack a certain quality such as mindfulness, or because we have some lesson to learn about life. We resist the notion that it is in the solving of our own problems that we learn and grow. We put time limits on our expectations, forgetting that everything occurs in God's time, and that all is in order – we just can't always see the Big Picture. We must learn to trust that God has things under control, that we are here for a reason, and that outcomes always ultimately ensure the highest good, remembering that our highest good may be to learn a very difficult life lesson. Faith is a basic level of trust in the process, and a willingness to allow life to unfold as it does. :-)