A bit of a semantical muse was upon me, even while tempted to monkey around on a long weekend...
It's one of those "why didn't I notice that years ago" type of things. Have you ever noticed how often patience is mentioned in tandem with kindness in the Bible? It's the sort of thing that just seems obvious I suppose. In the reading of it your eyes just glass over and you gloss over it.
Yeah, maybe it's a little thing, but it's been taken over my ruminations and cogitations the past few...
It's clear to me now. The pairing of the two words "Patience and Kindness" is very significant. They are two sides of the same record. Patience is side A and Kindness is on the flipside. I needed someone to point out the significance of this -- it didn't come to me on my own. It came while reading Alex Strauch's excellent "Leading with Love."
Patience is what you don't do to someone. Kindness is what you do do to someone.
Patience is analogous to mercy (not getting what you deserve).
Kindness is like grace (unmerited favor: getting a good thing you don't deserve).
Yeah, there's the rub. That's where it really stuck in my mind and meditation.
The patience of God, withholding a judgement justly deserved -- Mercy!
Noah, how long can you tread water?
The kindness of God -- Grace!
Noah, build an ark! I'll provide a way to save you and any others who are willing to get in it. (while I withhold my anger/judgement).
Jesus Christ: the Grace of God providing salvation from destruction -- while God's patience/mercy delays his judgement for a time.
Noah's ark and the flood. Jesus, the cross, the empty tomb.
Hoo-ahh! Mercy me!