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The value of patience

By | August 21st 2011

With Anne Anjao-Eboi

I was born and brought up in Mombasa where things are a bit slow compared to Nairobi. So when I came to Nairobi to undertake my undergraduate studies, I couldn’t quite comprehend why Nairobians are in such a rush.

I can’t say that after many years in this city I understand better. Patience is one passionately absent word in the vocabulary of a typical Nairobian.

Try walking in the streets. Besides the sheer volume of human traffic, the lightning speed at which people move can annoy you. If you don’t give way, they won’t. Prepare to have a shoulder ache after that encounter.

Where are we running to? Patience, according to the Good Book, is a virtue. It is noble. It is one of those characteristics the employer is keen on because there will be situations that will call for your patience, failure to which you will lose business or a client.

There are fruits to be harvested for being patient. Have you ever waited for someone and just when you have given up, he/she shows up?

Abraham was 99 years old and childless when God appeared to him and promised him that he would be a father of many nations. Indeed, God fulfilled His covenant with Abraham because of Isaac, out of whom came many descendants who to date, dwell in Israel and the Middle East. Jacob waited seven years while working for Laban to marry his sweetheart Rachel. However, Laban tricked him and gave him the unattractive Leah instead. Jacob did not lose heart. He continued working for Laban for another seven years in order to get Rachel.


My nephew completed university three years ago and was among the lucky few to get absorbed in the job market, although he worked in a small audit firm earning Sh20,000 a month. He has these big dreams and has set high goals, which include acquiring more relevant papers and ultimately working for a reputable company.

He worked diligently and didn’t bother applying to these companies until he had acquired the precious, much sought after three years experience. It’s been three months and the young man is now working with one of his dream companies.

Why, therefore, are we so impatient when God has said He will respond to our prayers? God has seen the future. He knows where we will be ten years from now. If we pray and trust Him to do it, then let us learn to be patient for though it tarries, it will come.

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