“A person who is a master of patience is master of everything else.” George Savile
“You can become anything you want to be.” Or, “You deserve it.” These two phrases are common in American culture. They reflect our overhyped need for “new and improved.” The result: Shiny New Objects—a never-ending pursuit of something new to own or even something new to think.
Shiny Things: Our Obsession
Falling for enticing “shiny objects” has become almost commonplace. I think we are looking for something outside ourselves to satisfy our deep internal needs.
Sadly, I must admit that I wrestle with a dangerous character flaw: I have a proclivity to be both spontaneous and impulsive. When I want something, I don’t like to wait. I impulsively buy. Retail clothing boutiques love me. They see me coming and they begin counting dollars. If it were up to me alone I can be dangerous. For example, I hate timeshares… truly! But, oh my goodness, put me into a timeshare sales office and I am in danger of falling for the pitch and end up buying something.
Impulsiveness, however, impacts my life in more ways than just buying “stuff.” I have found that I can also be impatient about my opinions. It is frightening just how quickly I can come to conclusions without adequate information and much needed reflection.
Changing the Ways I Think
This year (2021) I have learned to exercise the amazing power of a new (for me) virtue. That virtue is Patience. In essence, I have learned the value of “withholding judgment” and “waiting.”
In my morning inspirational readings one writer refers to relying on the “slow work of God.” God is abundantly patient and seems to allow things to roll along without direct divine intervention, all so each of us can learn the grand lessons of waiting and withholding judgment.
I find that too often most of us can come to conclusions too quickly without adequate information and deep reflection.
The Unappealing Value of Waiting
Patience comes with a most settling sense of peace and sound-reasoning.
And so my encouragement is simple…
And Then… Wait a Bit Longer
Photo courtesy of denisgo at istockphoto
2 thoughts on “Patience: Shiny Objects and Shiny Thoughts”
Charlie: As always, enjoyed today’s thought. Agree about patience…in my limited experience with it, I find that it often does work to my benefit.
But impulsiveness and spontaneity as character flaws, and the desire for “new and shiny”? Not sure I agree with characterizing those as flaws; indeed I often wish I could be more spontaneous and less controlled. Plus, imagine where we’d be as a culture if we didn’t desire new things. We might still be using horses instead of cars, as just one example of progress that’s been achieved by people wanting new and better, doncha think?!
Tim. As usual you have interesting thoughts. I agree with your line of thinking. I guess there is a balance (as always) somewhere in the middle. Please keep on sending me your thoughts. I so appreciate your ideas.