Patience

“True patience consists in bearing calmly the evils others do to us, and in not being consumed by resentment against those who inflict them. Those who only appear to bear the evils done them by their neighbors, who suffer them in silence while they are looking for an opportunity for revenge, are not practicing patience, but only making a show of it. Paul writes that love is patient and kind. It is patient in bearing the evils done to us by others, and it is kind in even loving those it bears with. Jesus himself tells us: Love your enemies, do good to those that hate you, pray for those who persecute and calumniate you. Virtue in the sight of others is to bear with those who oppose us, but virtue in God’s sight is to love them. This is the only sacrifice acceptable to God. But often we appear to be patient only because we are unable to repay the evils we suffer from others. As I have said, those who don’t pay back evil only because they can’t are not patient. We are not looking to have patience on the surface, but in the heart.” (St. Gregory the Great – d. 604AD, Be Friends of God, pp 50-51)

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