Milk toast has been around for a long time and is considered a “comfort food.” It is not so popular now but was common in the late nineteenth century as a dish for young children and the invalid. Warmed milk is poured over toast and butter and sugar is added. It was thought to be easy to digest, warm and soothing. Since the mid thirties, milk toast has come to represent a spineless, mild and unassertive person. This is largely due to the creation of the cartoon character, Caspar Milquetoast in the strip, The Timid Soul.
Today’s verse could be directed to the person with the mistaken view of God as “milk toast.” The Lord is patient and kind with the intent of leading the rebel to repentance. He holds back His judgement for a time in order to draw more to His saving grace and forgiveness. Instead of responding in grateful humility, some show contempt for God thinking Him weak, ineffectual or uncaring. Nothing could be further from the truth. There will be a time of wrath, judgement and settling of accounts. But He waits out of love for that stubborn individual who keeps turning his back. He waits and for now shows patience.
That same kindness is what He asks me to show others. It does not make me “milk toast,” but instead kindness helps me persevere in patient prayer for that unrepentant one. His fruit of kindness in me is so much more attractive than a critical judgemental attitude.
Lord, make me patient and kind, confident that You are working in hearts even when I do not see it!