Patience is a mind that is able to accept, fully and happily, whatever occurs. It is much more than just gritting our teeth and putting up with things. Being patient means to welcome wholeheartedly whatever arises, having given up the idea that things should be other than what they are. It is always possible to be patient; there is no situation so bad that it cannot be accepted patiently, with an open, accommodating, and peaceful heart.
This quote comes from the Buddhist monk, Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, in his book ‘How to Solve Our Human Problems.’ I first heard this quote nearly a year ago and have tried to live by it ever since hearing it. And of course, I don’t always succeed. The Buddhist principle of letting go of what we want and accepting what comes is a hard one to follow! I’ve always been a patient person when it comes to others, but never as patient regarding myself. I have prayed to have the type of patience that this quote describes, and it seems that God is giving me an opportunity to cultivate this mindset!
As I mentioned in my last post, my husband and I have been planning a move! We found the perfect place and just when it seemed that everything would go smoothly, we started running into a lot of ‘bumps in the road.’ The first bump had to do with the fact that they suddenly wanted more money than they’d originally asked. We did some negotiating and came up with a number that made everyone happy. During the negotiating time, I was so worried that things wouldn’t work out and we wouldn’t get to move into this place. Our current living circumstances – although I’m grateful for them – are way less than ideal and I have been itching to move for over a year. To get so excited, only to be let down was irritating, to say the least. Especially since I’d already experienced this excitement/let-down only a few weeks earlier when I thought (mistakenly) that I was pregnant.
When we were finally able to confirm that we could move in to this new place, I was happy and excited again. Still, though, I had a feeling that something else would go wrong. And I wasn’t sure if I only felt that way out of caution or because of my sometimes-keen instincts.
I had a dream that my husband would get into a car accident and lose his job as a result. And two weeks later, that’s exactly what happened.
Hopefully, he will find something before moving day (which is in three weeks)!! Just before he lost the job, we had been hearing sermons in church that dealt with not worrying and trusting God – certainly those were messages for us! But this situation is also stretching my patience, my ability to ‘welcome wholeheartedly whatever arises,’ and give up ‘the idea that things should be other than what they are.’
I’ll obviously be sad if we can’t move to this perfect place that we worked so hard to keep. But we have sought God in every decision we’ve made, and so He is guiding us. Perhaps what we think is perfect for us is not actually what He wants us to have. Maybe there’s something better.