"Ever so Patient"
October 16, 2014
The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. 2 Peter 3:9
Raleigh and Tunica Hall are in love. It is a love they celebrated at their marriage on June 28th.
As is the case for most brides and grooms, their vows were accompanied by dreams of living "happily ever after." For Raleigh and Tunica, that dream would be unfulfilled.
You see, one month after they tied the knot, Tunica suffered what she called the "worst headache of my life." Her headache was a brain hemorrhage. By the time she regained consciousness, Tunica couldn't remember her age, the year, or her husband.
Although he was shocked at having had their marriage forgotten, Raleigh decided to sit back and wait. He thought, "Time will tell. Maybe her memory will come back on its own."
Sometimes memories do spontaneously return, but in this case, after two days, Tunica was still unenlightened, at least in regard to her husband.
That was when Raleigh decided to do something. The something he decided on was to cover Tunica's hospital room with pictures of their wedding day. With considerable deliberation, Raleigh selected and then posted a picture ... and then another ... and then another. Eventually, there were 1,000 pictures wallpapering the room.
At first those pretty photos meant nothing to Tunica, but then she began to ask questions. She wanted to know: "Who is this?" or "What were they doing?" and "What was going on here?" Soon she started talking about the service and when they had been married.
At long last Raleigh's patience and love paid off. Tunica's memory returned, and they happily celebrated their three-month anniversary.
Nice story, isn't it?
It's nice when patience and love wins out. It's nice when a groom's patience and love helps his wife remember. It's even nicer when the Lord's patience and love brings a soul to repentance, faith and salvation.
That's the point Peter was trying to make in the text above. Back then, like now, there were Christians who were wondering how long would the Lord Jesus put off His return and bring an end to the seemingly endless persecution, pain and problems His people were enduring?
Jesus assured them that Judgment Day was coming but, for now, the Lord was lovingly, patiently, trying to gather in as many lost souls as was possible. As Jesus Himself had said, He had lived, suffered, died and risen so "... repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His Name to all nations ..." (Luke 24:47a).
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, the world is a sinful place, and it is difficult for Your people. We ask that during this time when You are calling people to forgiveness and salvation, we may be found faithful to the Lord who gave His life as the price for our redemption. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries