Friday, 8 February 2013

The Virtue of Patience and the Traditional Church

Do we live in a particularly impatient age? Probably not, patience is a virtue that must be learned, meaning that impatience has not suddenly appeared in the last few years. But do we have the opportunity or necessity of learning to be patient as perhaps people did a thousand years ago? I suspect we do. All technological break-throughs shift the 'locality' where people have to show patience. We don't have to show patience in the same areas of life as did people in 1813, but we still have to show patience. So, for example, I have access to enormous amounts of information in a very short space of time. I don't need to patiently send a letter asking for a document; instead I can pull it up on the internet.    Perhaps - because of the pace of change and technological innovation - in comparison to former generations we are more tempted to think we shouldn't need to be patient, leading to higher levels of impatience. However,  it still takes the same disciplines to be patient now as it did a thousand years ago, and in some areas of our lives nothing has changed, and we must learn patience in exactly the same way as did our forebears.

The seemingly slow pace of personal transformation is one of those areas. There are no shortcuts in the daily dying and rising with Christ. Technology hasn't made this dying and rising any easier than it was a thousand years ago. We still have to learn the same degree of patience with those we live with and love as did people in 1013. We still have to learn that we are not God and therefore we must exercise patience when praying and looking for the kingdom of God.  We still need patience in worship, learning the rhythms of worship and not to manufacture the kingdom now. Welcome to the traditional church.


  1. I wonder if it's true that we are not God?
    We are after all the Body of Christ

  2. Each and everyone of us has a drop of the devine sea (GOD)within.
    I like your comment Stephen as it is spot on.

  3. Hi Stephen and Cecil,

    I don't think we are God in the same way that God is. The early church liked to say that God became human to make us divine, but they did not mean that we literally became God. In Christ ('in' tells us something here) we are united with God in God's very life of love. Retaining the literal distinction between God and creation allows us to maintain our relationship of love instead of nature.