“strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy;”
Paul prays that the Christian will have power for “all patience and longsuffering with joy.”
“for all patience”
God’s power is designed for “patience” and “longsuffering with joy.” This is not the sour resignation to accept God’s will. It is not the passive acceptance of the inevitable. “Patience” or endurance is the pro-active action to move ahead, no matter the difficulty. Strength comes from the power inherent in God himself. It is the ability to put our faith in the strength that God gives us.
“Patience” is far more than the ability to bear circumstances. It is the ability to turn adversity into the glory of God. “Patience” does not yield to adversity in life. It faces trouble head-on. No circumstance in life can defeat a person who draws upon the power of God. No setback can vanquish this kind of person. This believer triumphs over anything life may hand out because he does it in the power of God.
The Greek word is not the same as the puny English word “patience.” We say, “I wish I had more tolerance for the problems in my life.” This is not the passive acceptance of the inevitable. On the contrary, it is an unrelenting persistence in the power of God, even in the face of difficulty and trial.
The word in the original means tenacity or endurance. It is that capacity of bulldog stick-to-it-tiveness. This person says, “It is too soon to quit. I am not going to give up.” A college President I attended preached a sermon every year, “Don’t Quit Too Soon.” If we have God’s strength strengthening us in our daily life, we will not throw in the towel. God’s power will enable us to bear with the problem.
The word “patience” carries the idea of endurance in James 1:3; 5:11. This term is used of an athlete in Hebrews 12:1 who runs with dogged persistence the entire course. There is a difference between “patience” and “longsuffering.” “Patience” or endurance pertains to adverse circumstances. “Longsuffering” relates to difficult people primarily.
Patience does not succumb to problems.
“Patience” hangs in there, even in tough situations. Patience does not easily succumb to problems. A lack of patience leads to discouragement. Are you developing a hide like a rhinoceros? The real issue is whether you can bear it. Are you tempted to quit? Do you have the virtue of persistence?