The Least Of The ‘Honkers’ (Learning Patience)


My wife and I noticed a habit that local drivers have here in the west; they honk- rather quickly compared to the east coast. We were sitting at a light and it couldn’t have been green for more than a fraction of a section when I heard a quick “honk” coming from behind me. It gave me the impression that the driver behind me was mad at us. It happened several times so much so that we noticed it as something common in driving here.  Later, as my wife and I drove around town with our daughter, she did the same thing at a light. It was a quick “honk” not meant to be mean, just an alert to the driver that the light had turned green. My wife said to her, “Everyone honks here.”  My daughter acknowledged that drivers did so but in defending herself she said, “I am the least of the honkers!” The statement “I am the least of the honkers” made me laugh and think. What was she saying? I think she meant that “I may be impatient, but not as impatient as everyone else”.

Patience! It is so hard to be patience! I was so impressed by a talk on that subject, titled “Continue in Patience”. In that address Dieter Uchtdorf told  us that patience isn’t merely waiting but it is “actively working toward worthwhile goals and not getting discouraged when results didn’t appear instantly or without effort”.

He reminded us of the oft quoted scripture:

“No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned” (“Continue In Patience”, April, 2010).

Yes, as members of Christ’s church, we must become “the least of the honkers.” Sometimes we must sit and wait lovingly and patiently for others to move forward in their own time. Often others are doing the same for us. It is so easy to lose the virtue of patience with others. Interestingly enough, most of us want others to be patience with our faults and shortcomings.

“Patience is a godly attribute that can heal souls, unlock treasures of knowledge and understanding, and transform ordinary men and women into saints and angels. Patience is truly a fruit of the Spirit. Patience means staying with something until the end. It means delaying immediate gratification for future blessings. It means reining in anger and holding back the unkind word. It means resisting evil, even when it appears to be making others rich.

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.” Ultimately, patience means being “firm and steadfast, and immovable in keeping the commandments of the Lord” every hour of every day, even when it is hard to do so” (“Continue In Patience”, President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, April 2010)

We all need to be “honked” at from time to time. It can be a reminder that we need to get moving. But done too often, “honking” at friends and loved ones can be excessive and it loses it’s power or meaning. So, let us be wise in how we encourage and in what fashion we do so. More often than not being “the least of the honkers” can be more effective in motivating others than those who are prone to lay on the horn.


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