Our order last night at the ice cream parlor should have only taken a few moments. When things extended beyond 20 or so minutes, the Plank mini-van got a bit rambunctious. Chloe needed to be set free from her car seat to explore the van, Ethan and Abigail did their thing to pass the time, and Brenda and I almost patiently waited for several scoops of ordered ice cream to show up in the pick-up window. We both caught one another sighing heavily and saying things like: “come on! It’s just ice cream!”
It occurs to me now that the ice cream’s been ingested and the kids are tucked away in bed, that this is precisely how Christian character is forged: in the smaller moments of life, like when customer service fails to meet our expectations or deliver as promised.
Here is how the Apostle Paul would have addressed my sighing, eye-rolling and impatient tones: “be gentle, and… show perfect courtesy toward all people” (Titus 3:2). Not just courtesy – but perfect courtesy. And this, my friends, is exactly what our Lord is patiently working into us as we face spilt milk, absentee waiters & long wait times for ice cream.
After all, for a person who because of Jesus has been given more than could ever be deserved – what is a 20 minute wait?