Wise parents teach their children to be patient while showing forth love towards them. When children learn to wait patiently for their desires, they are less likely to become little tyrants in their homes. Thus, homes will be more peaceful, and families will be happier.
One mother I heard about taught her children patience by a gentle touch. When her child wanted her attention while she was visiting with someone else, she taught them to simply and quietly put their little hand on her wrist; she put her hand over their hand and continued with her conversation. The child knew his mother was aware of his desire and waited patiently until his mother could appropriately end her conversation and attend to the child.
Patience is a difficult trait to learn, and many people grow old without ever learning it. We all know people who have not learn patience. What might be cute in a toddler or bearable in a young child is actually very ugly in adulthood. We often hear news stories about someone being impatient and using violence on another person.
I remember many times telling one or more of my children, “Be patient” for whatever reason. I remember telling my teenage son to “be patient because patience is a Christlike attribute and you need to learn it.” My son replied, “I know – but I don’t want to be patient!” I am still telling him to “be patient” from time to time, but he is becoming more patient as he grows older.
If parents help little children to be patient in their waiting, the children will learn attribute of Christ and thus find blessings, comfort and even healing. They will also be more pleasant! Many people believe that patience is passive, but they are wrong. Patience is being active in waiting – like a child with a hand on his mother’s wrist.
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, stated, “Patience is not passive resignation nor is it failing to act because of our fears. Patience is not passive resignation, nor is it failing to act because of our fears. Patience means active waiting and enduring. It means staying with something … even when the desires of our hearts are delayed. Patience is not simply enduring; it is enduring well.”
President Uchtdorf continued, “Patience means accepting that which cannot be changed and facing it with courage, grace, and faith. It means being `willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon [us], even as a child doth submit to his father’ [Mosiah 3:19]. Ultimately, patience means being `firm and steadfast, and immovable in keeping the commandments of the Lord’ [1 Nephi 2:10] every hour of every day, even when it is hard to do so.” (See “Continue in Patience,” Ensign, May 2010, 57-59.)
Patient children grow into patient adults, and generations of families are blessed. When family members are patient in their waiting, families are stronger in their relationships. Strong families strengthen communities and nations.