Have you ever noticed that other people’s forgetfulness can try your patience? As a college professor, I find my patience stretched when a student forgets to do an assignment that’s clearly spelled out in the syllabus.

In the Old Testament story of Joseph, we see a far worse example of forgetfulness—and we can only imagine how he struggled to be patient as a result.

While in prison, Joseph interpreted a dream of the king’s butler, which led to the man’s release. Joseph told him, “Remember me when it is well with you, and please show kindness to me; make mention of me to Pharaoh, and get me out of this house” (Gen. 40:14). It would seem that after Joseph had helped the butler gain freedom, remembering him would have been high on his “to do” list. But it was 2 years before the butler spoke to Pharaoh about Joseph (41:9). Finally, Joseph was freed.

Imagine the impatience Joseph felt as he waited each day in that dungeon (40:15)—perhaps thinking his only chance at freedom had passed. Yet Joseph had a resource: He had God’s presence (39:21), as do we (Heb. 13:5). When you’re feeling impatient, lean on the God who is always with you. He’ll turn your impatience into patient trust.