Work, Don’t Wish

A few days ago, I was stuck behind a slow driver. Like, “below the speed limit” kind of slow. I wasn’t in a rush, but I was still seriously annoyed. Slow drivers take patience that I just do not possess. As I tapped the steering wheel, I thought, “I’d really like to be a more patient person.” It was a nice thought. But the next day, someone showed up fifteen minutes late to a meeting, & the finger tapping came right back. Apparently, I don’t possess patience for traffic even when I’m not the one stuck in it.

Sometimes, there’s a serious gap between the girl I am in the moment & the girl I’ve always dreamed of being. That gap will never close with good intentions. Not even a little bit. I can declare that I want to be more patient for the rest of my life without losing one little ounce of my high-strung, finger tapping self. At some point, if I truly want to be patient, I’ll have to stop wishing for better character & start working toward it.

The girl I’ve hoped to be — patient, gracious, filled equally with strength & kindness  — can’t stay forever as a beautiful picture in my mind. I want her to be a beautiful picture to those she encounters, an example of how grace can transform even the most impatient hearts. So I’m going to stop wishing for her to show up. Instead, I’ll work to become her.

Next time I’m stuck behind a slow driver, I’ll take a breath & remember that I’ll still get to where I’m going. I’ll use those quiet moments to get thankful instead of getting tense. I will take steps, even tiny ones, to become the girl I’ve dreamed of. Because work beats wishing every time.

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