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Tuesday, August 3, 2010

I Needed to Find Patience

Patience is something I definitely need more of. If asked to make out a Christmas wish list, I believe patience would be near the top.

It seems every area of my life requires me to bring a large degree of patience to it. I need patience with my son, my husband, my family and friends. I even need patience with myself who I seem to have the least patience for. I have also been wrestling at times with problems of choosing what is the right thing to do and what I really want to do. I currently have a situation that is testing my patience like this to the breaking point.

I have a neighbor who is very much addicted to prescription drugs and alcohol. I have never seen him straight. He is so messed up all the time and having a concealed carry license, he is packing a gun all the time. Not a good mix. He has pretty much gotten into it with everyone on the street at one time or another and I believe is very unstable making him dangerous. Though we do our best to get along, this neighbor sure does not make it easy. His latest trying of my patience gig is letting his dog and cat run loose. Both animals have decided that our yard and our flower beds are their most favorite places to use as their private bathrooms. I get so infuriated when I find their piles in the yard and in the flower beds I want to march down there and basically let him have it over being a very irresponsible pet owner. I have lost flowers and grass due to them urinating and dropping feces on them. But what upsets me the most is this is where my 2 year old son plays and I am constantly having to keep him out of areas that I have to clean up and hose down. Besides it being a nuisance, it is also a serious health hazard.

So many things that I so want to say and do pop into my head and I can hear satan urging me to go and do just that. What’s worse, when I try and come up with ways to discourage the animals from visiting our yard, the one thing that keeps popping into my head that would do the trick could also possibly kill the animal. Again, I hear satan urging me that this is the best course of action as this will get rid of the problem once and for all. But, luckily for me God has a way of coming through with all the reasons why I should not do such a thing. There are just as many if not more important reasons not to do such a thing than there are reasons that seem to justify me in taking such an action.

This morning, when yet again I found more feces in the yard I almost succumbed to satan’s urging and do what I knew was wrong. I almost set up the scenario that would cure me of the animals from coming back, but may harm or kill the animals. Also, luckily for me and my neighbor, he wasn’t outside for me to get into it with as I was cursing at having to deal with this problem and I was ready for a confrontation. God certainly does look out for me.

So, instead I came inside and asked God to direct me. He led me to the Bible sitting on my nightstand. I said aloud, “OK, lead me to the right passage that I need to hear.” This is the passage he led me to:

“May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other – each with the attitude of Christ Jesus toward the other.” Romans 15:5

In other words, I need to treat him as I would want to be treated and how Jesus would treat him. Though I may not be ready to treat him quite the same way Jesus would, (I much rather just stay away from him and he stay away from us) I can certainly not do what satan wants me to do to him.

So, here I sit, still mad over the situation, but relieved that God stepped in to convince me that the right thing to do was the best way to behave. I believe he has prevented me from starting a war that I and many others would have regretted.

Would it be selfish of me though to pray that God direct the animals to defecate in their own yard? Maybe God could convince the owner that he is being irresponsible and to clean up his act, both literally and figuratively. No, I think I might have a better chance at getting my prayers answered if I asked God to put an animal force field around my yard.

Praying for patience sure has helped me. I hope it helps you.


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