What would you say are some of our greatest needs as Christians? Some would say we need more prayer, or more power, or more boldness, or more love, or even more money to help support God's work.
All those things are needed, but here James says that one of our greatest needs is patience. He says that everything we have longed for will come to pass when Christ returns. Until then, we need to be patient.
He gives us two examples, both of which point out the same thing. The farmer sows the seed and then all he can do, besides caring for the crop, is to wait for it to grow and ripen ready for harvest.
Then James reminds us of the Old Testament prophets and saints, particularly Job. What happened to Job? Do you remember all the troubles he had? It wasn't until after it was over, that Job began to understand why God allowed it all. It may not be until the time when Jesus comes again that we will understand some of the reasons behind the circumstances of our lives.
In the meantime we need to be patient and trust God to work out his plans and purposes even if we cannot see the way ahead. It is our heavenly Father who is guiding our lives and, as James says in verse 11, God is full of compassion and mercy.
Do you know the words of this song?
'Someday He'll make it plain to me;
Someday when I his face shall see.
Someday from sin I shall be free;
Someday I shall understand.'
The coming of the Lord is drawing near.