The patience of man which is good, praiseworthy, and deserving the name of virtue is said to be that by which we endure evils with equanimity so as not to abandon, through a lack of equanimity, the good through which we arrive at the better. By their unwillingness to suffer evil, the impatient do not effect their deliverance from it; instead, they bring upon themselves the suffering of more grievous ills. But the patient, who prefer to bear wrongs without committing them rather than to commit them by not enduring them, both lessen what they suffer in patience and escape worse things by which, through impatience, they would be submerged. In yielding to evils that are brief and passing, they do not destroy the good which is great and eternal, for ‘the sufferings of the present time are not worthy to be compared,’ the Apostle says, ‘with the glory to come that will be revealed in us.’ And he also says: ‘our present light affliction, which is for the moment, prepares for us an eternal weight of glory that is beyond all measure.’
Augustine of Hippo, Treatises on Various Subjects, 1952, 16, 238.