The Bible says that when you pray, God can answer instantly. But nowhere in the Bible are you promised ‘instant patience’. Patience is a quality of character, and character is built over a lifetime of walking with God through good times and bad. One Bible teacher says, ‘Patience is just faith taking its time.’ Here is how God develops patience in us: 1) Interruptions. You sit down to eat dinner and your phone starts ringing. You’re in the bath and someone comes to the door. You’re quickly working to meet a deadline and visitors arrive. It’s said that when Brahms was writing his famous ‘Lullaby’, he encountered so many interruptions, it took him seven years to compose the piece. Someone joked, ‘When you’re writing a lullaby, you need all those interruptions to keep you from falling asleep at the piano.’ 2) Delays. We hate to wait. We have a microwave mindset – we want what we want – in seconds. We have fast food, quick-cook pasta, and instant coffee. We’re like the man who prayed, ‘Lord, give me patience, and I want it right now!’ 3) Irritations. Long lines, lost keys, late planes, phone calls, cold food, flat tyres, occupied bathrooms, traffic jams…the list is endless. Do you know that 90 per cent of heart attack sufferers have the ‘hurried’ Type A personality? The Bible says, ‘Impatience will get you into trouble’ (Proverbs 19:2 GNT). We speak of the patience of Job, who said, ‘All the days of my hard service I will wait for my renewal to come’ (Job 14:14 NIV). Pray about it, exercise patience, and be confident in God!