Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Careful What you ask!

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My late grandparents spent a great deal of their retirement years pulling and Airstream travel trailer and exploring the United States. My grandfather told the story that on one of their many trips across the country, he and my grandmother got into a bit of an argument over the pronunciation of the town they were passing through.

After a spirited argument with no signs of resolution or compromise in the immediate future, they elected to stop for breakfast at a fast food restaurant. When the college-age guy behind the counter offered to take their order, my grandfather saw an opportunity to resolve their argument over the pronunciation of the town's name. So, he said to the guy behind the counter, "Hey, how about solving an argument for us. Tell us how to pronounce where we are and say it real slow." The guy behind the counter shrugged his shoulders, leaned over the counter and slowly said, "Bur-ger King."

I remember several years ago recognizing the high level of impatience that I possess. So, I began praying, "God, give me patience." In my mind, I thought that patience could be granted much like when I would call my Dad from college and say, "Hey, there is a retreat next weekend, can I have $75 to go." If he found the cause worthy, a week later a check would arrive. But it seems that is not how one acquires patience. Apparently, one does not wake up one morning suddenly feeling more patient than ever before in their life. No, to develop patience, one must learn patience.

So, my continued prayer requests for patience was met with me finding myself in more situations where I did not control everything and things did not happen at the pace that I thought they should. It was a very uncomfortable time, and I did not enjoy it a bit. I do not know if I developed more patience. But, I do know that I learned to be a bit more careful when I ask for something. I now contemplate on what might be the results of the request.


Bill (cycleguy) said...

Love this thought Allen. i was always told not to pray for patience unless you expected trouble. patience is developed in the fire.

Allen Madding said...

Very good point, Bill. Glad to see blogspot is cooperating with you once again.


Canajun said...

Reminds me of a comment a friendmade recently: "How come everything I want to do exceeds my attention span?"

Patience is hard to come by, and even harder to maintain. I find as I grow older I've become less and less patient with fools and incompetents, but on the other hand have enormous patience with anyone seriously trying to accomplish something meaningful.

Unknown said...


We can't worry about things which are beyond our control. Call it destiny, fate, happenchance, whatever. Change what you can and worry less about the other things. Patience increases with age

Riding the Wet Coast

Allen Madding said...

Canajun - I really like your observation. I think we may be on the same track :)

bobskoot - I hope you are right. :)


Lady R (Di) said...

My mom always said, "Patience is a virtue." I believe she is right.

Happy New Year Allen!

Allen Madding said...

Happy New Year, LadyR


Jack Riepe said...

Dear Mr. Madding:

The best way to learn about patience is to be one in a hospital.

Happy New Year!

Fondest regards,
Twisted Roads

Allen Madding said...

reep -
I think I will do my best to skip that lesson if at all possible :)

Thanks for visiting