Sundays | 9am & 10:30am | The Woodlands, TX

Attitude Matters: James 5:7-11

Be Patient
John Witte

Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains. 8 You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand. 9 Do not grumble against one another, brothers, so that you may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing at the door. 10 As an example of suffering and patience, brothers, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. 11 Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful.—James 5:7-11 (ESV)

As the old saying goes, we should never ask for patience because we’re likely to find ourselves in a position to need it! All kidding aside, patience is a virtue in short supply these days. In today’s sermon, John Witte asked, “What do you do when your good life goes bad?” Most of us try to find a quick fix for the problem, even when that isn’t the wisest thing to do. Take a moment and watch the video clip below from today’s sermon.
As we near the conclusion of our study of the book of James, we are again taught to allow God to complete His work in our lives through trials. Using the analogy of a farmer, James says we should remember that this life should not be our focus, but rather that we should live in anticipation of Jesus’ return.

Patience equals perspective.

When we think it’s only about right now, we are easily angered by our circumstances and become “short-tempered.” Patience means “long-tempered.” When we focus on Jesus –the work he is doing in our lives to make us more like Him and His return – our attitude about our circumstances and other people changes.

TELL THE GROUP> about a time in your life when you were inpatient and short-tempered and later regretted it.

ASK> If we all have similar stories, why do we struggle with impatience? Isn’t that a lesson we can learn once and for all? Why or Why not?

READ > Matthew 7:1-2 and James 2:13

ASK> How is being short-tempered a form of judgment against other people? What are the consequences?

LOOK UP> the word “establish” in the dictionary.

James 5:8 tells us to “establish our hearts.” John Witte taught us that the word “establish” is “apathetic.”

ASK> What do you think it means to establish our hearts? What role do we have in that process? What role does God have?

ASK> What can believers do to help one another develop patience and perseverance?

For more Bible passages on perseverance, this week read Romans 2:7; 5:3, 4; 8:24, 25; 1 Timothy 4:16; Hebrews 10:36; 12:1; James 1:2–4, 12; 2 Peter 1:5–9.
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