The old saying, “Rome wasn’t built in a day” was a French proverb in the late 1100s but not recorded in English until 1545. A general meaning for this saying is that all things take time to create. And great things, like the city of Rome, take time to complete. So, one would use the saying to acknowledge an activity that will take time.
The Spanish Steps
Last week I was surrounded by the world famous monuments, structures, and architectures of Rome and I thought about what the saying means to me. The word that comes to my mind is patience. Patience in life. Patience in everything you do - your job, your work, your relationships, yourself. Nothing gets to where you want it to be in one day alone. Everything in life takes time.
The Trevi Fountain
The "twin" churches of Santa Maria in Montesanto and Santa Maria dei Miracoli in Piazza del Popolo
For me, patience is hard. I like immediate response, fast service, things to go “right” the first time. My friend cut something out of a Real Simple article this past fall and put it on my refrigerator. It was a “fine” that said, “$2 for calling two minutes after sending an e-mail.” haha. Now, you have to give me credit, I don’t actually do this (even though I do love to e-mail). But, there is truth in that – people are impatient. I am included. I am working on being patient – in the little things and big things. Especially, in developing who I am and who I want to be. I want to be more patient and gentle, more loving and compassionate. Having these traits become a part of you takes time. It takes diligence on your part and allowing the Lord to work in your life and heart.
The Arch of Constantine and The Colosseum
The Roman Forum
I have peace knowing two things. First, I don’t have to obtain these qualities on my own and, second, I don’t have to have “more” of these qualities right now. I am practicing patience knowing that He who began a good work in me will complete it. Until then, I will persevere building my “Rome” day by day, knowing I don’t have to build it by tomorrow, or by myself.
Piazza designed by Michelangelo on Capitoline Hill
View of Rome from the Capitoline Museum
“Be confident of this: that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6