June 10: “Which is Better: Power or Patience?”

4 Minute Read


1 Kings 7:1-51
Acts 7:30-50
Psalm 128:1-6
Proverbs 16:31-33


Proverbs 16:32 (CSB): “Patience is better than power, and controlling one’s emotions, than capturing a city.”




It’s the reason that sports car owners like to rev their engines.

It’s the reason that some aspire to positions of leadership.

It’s the reason that some love to purchase guns and visit the shooting range.

It’s the reason that a fearful young lady takes her ferocious dog on walks with her.

It’s the reason that some men and women visit the local gym.

It’s the reason that bullies pick on kids weaker than themselves.

Power is something we are attracted to. Sometimes, a desire for power can be good and right. At other times, it can be cruel and wicked.

But the fact remains that we don’t want to feel weak. We want to feel empowered.

And, yet the verse that I have chosen as Today’s Bible Verse says that there is something better than power.

Proverbs 16:32 (CSB): “Patience is better than power, and controlling one’s emotions, than capturing a city.”

This proverb claims that “patience is better than power.” Then, it seems to restate this truth by saying that “controlling one’s emotions (is better) than capturing a city.”

It would seem that the inclusion of “patience” and “controlling one’s emotions” means that someone was treated unjustly. They could either respond with power or patience. This proverb says that responding with patience is much better than responding with power.

Essentially, this proverbs notes that power can be demonstrated in one of two ways: we can use power to avenge ourselves or we can use power to control ourselves.

Imagine that you find out that someone is slandering you. In fact, they have been doing so for years. The people you thought were avoiding you really are avoiding you because they have listened to the slanderer. So, how do you respond? With power so that your words and actions can hurt the one who brought such harm to you? Or do you respond with power over yourself so that you patiently wait for the Lord to take action?

The fact that these words show up in Scriptures make it clear that God values it when we demonstrate self-control. A patient response is much better than a powerful, hurtful response.

That is what this proverb is all about. It celebrates self-control. It calls us to be people who have mastered ourselves and don’t let our powerful anger get the best of us.

Proverbs 16:32 (CSB): “Patience is better than power, and controlling one’s emotions, than capturing a city.”


What about you? Are you in control of your emotions or do your emotions control you? Do you respond to injustice with power that hurts the guilty person or do you respond with power over yourself (patience)?

After all, a follower-of-Jesus is going to be someone characterized by self-control and patience.

Galatians 5:22-25 (CSB): “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The law is not against such things. Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.”

If a lack of patience and self-control is a problem for you, why not spend today asking for God’s forgiveness and then spend some time submitting yourself to the Spirit’s control. He would be more than glad to bear the fruit of patience and self-control in your life.

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I have an incredible wife that God gave to me on May 10, 1997. Since then, the Lord has blessed us with three wonderful boys. I am also the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Polk City, Florida.

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