Patience. What does that mean? If you asked my two kids they would say it means "waiting nicely". That is what we have thought them. But, how can they really know what patience looks like if I don't display it myself? I am often reminded that I can't just tell them, but in order for them to fully understand, they have to see me model it.
Yesterday, I went in for my Tysabri infusion. The waiting room was packed and the line stretched to the door. I arrived early (shocking, I know). I continued to sit and sit and then sit even longer. People continued to flood in making it impossible for the lady working the front desk to get anything else done. I was then reminded, wait nicely. So, after 40 minutes of waiting my name was called. You would have thought I won something by how quickly I got up!
They took my vitals and sent me back to the chemo room. This is where I get a lot of strange looks because everyone in there, for the most part, are getting chemo treatments and they are thinking "what is she doing here". (I've been asked by several patients what kind of cancer I have knowing this is the chemo room. One lady asked where I got my wig because it looked so real. :) ) Anyway, I sat down in a chair and soon after an elder lady sat next to me. I got out stuff that I was going to work on for the next two hours waiting for the nurse to plug me up. Wilma, the lady that sat next to me, started to make small talk. For the next hour I learned that she is 86, has colon cancer, has 10 children and a gazillion grand and great grandchildren and so much more about her entire life. Her husband died 24 years ago and some of her kids help take care of her while she lives in an apartment by herself. I could go on and on to tell you about her. When her IV was finished her daughter-in-law came to help her move into her wheelchair. She held out her hand, not to shake mine, but for one of those hand squeezes. I told her it was nice talking to her and her face was lit up. I thought the moment was over, but as I tried to pull my hand away she just kept holding on. It made me realize something. Today wasn't about me getting my treatment, but about me giving an old lady some joy and just listening to her. It started in the waiting room. If I didn't "wait nicely" and got all frustrated that it was taking so long then I wouldn't have felt like talking and maybe not had the chance to sit by Wilma. So, patience is waiting nicely, but also about not missing out on an opportunity to bless someone else.
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.