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Published by glennpease

But let patience have her perfect work.— St. James i., 4.

But let patience have her perfect work.— St. James i., 4.

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Published by: glennpease on Mar 03, 2014
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PATIENT ENDURANCE BY GEORGE H. HEPWORTH, D.D. But let patience have her perfect work.— St. James i., 4. F)ATIENCE is generally classed among the minor * virtues, but so much of life's happiness and usefulness depend on it that we ought to give it a more prominent place. To patiently endure an en-vironment which includes suffering and hardship is nothing less than heroism, and there are unseen and unrecorded instances in which men and women have even shown the courage of the martyr. Patience is always yoked with other high qualities of character. Its nearest ally is self-control, and self-control is as important when you are building a character as a rudder is when a ship is launched. It is literally the steering apparatus which keeps us clear of the rocks and shoals of an impetuous and reckless temper. I would rather have patience with perfect self-control than to have genius, for while 184
PATIENT ENDURANCE 1 85 genius is erratic and often unbalanced, these other qualities give us poise and equilibrium. Patience is grounded on resignation to the inevitable, which re-sults in a calm endurance under exasperating cir-cumstances, and in the conviction that it is safer to bear the ills we have than to fly to others that we know not of. When a man cultivates patience, therefore, he becomes master of himself and master of whatever may possibly happen. It is a kingly, a royal virtue, and more depends on its possession than we are apt to think. You can reckon its value by considering its oppo-site. Impatience is a dangerous quality. It con-stantly places your self-respect and your relations to your dearest friends in peril. Moreover, it makes unhappy circumstances more unhappy still. You can't rebel against your surroundings with a com-plaining heart without rendering yourself weak to
oppose or change them. Look your life over calmly and impartially and you will find that where you have been at odds with your lot you have made that lot so much the worse and more difficult to get away from, whereas, if you had accepted the bitter experi-ence and made the best of it, you would have reaped 1 86 HERALD SERMONS a benefit otherwise impossible. It is equally true that where you have been impetuous of speech you have had cause for regret, while a curbed tongue has been cause for rejoicing. When you have been silent you have done better than when you have spoken. A bitter word suppressed strengthens the character, while a reckless utterance is like a bomb, which is sure to injure if it does not kill a friendship. It is an inexorable law that three quarters of the world must drudge in order to live. You may wonder why this should be so, but you will find no solution of the puzzle. The simple, stubborn fact

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