My son, do not despise the chastening of the LORD, nor detest His correction; For whom the LORD loves He corrects, just as a father the son in whom he delights. Proverbs 3:11-12 NKJV
Love requires pain at some point. When we love we want what’s best for the person. Therefore, discipline or correction is sometimes needed to help the person make better decisions. There are two kinds of discipline.
One is brought on us by God or others. Such is the case with a small child throwing a tantrum. They are trying to get their way, but the parent is not falling for it. The child receives a spanking to help him realize tantrums do not help them get their way. Sometimes God disciplines us too. We go astray by choosing our way instead of His. We are disciplined through consequences of poor choices, when God seems to distance Himself from us, and by prayers that seem to have no affect.
The other kind of discipline is self-discipline. Think about an Olympic Athlete. Without discipline they wouldn’t be where they are. The athlete disciplines themselves in order to win a gold, silver or bronze medal. We discipline our self too. We read God’s Word, seek Him in our thoughts and prayers, and fellowship with other believers because of future hope of eternal life. However, if we choose our way over God’s way enough, God has to discipline us to bring us back in alignment with Him.
Discipline is not bad but helpful. No matter what trails, difficulties or consequences we face as part of discipline towards us, remember we have a hope. God is good. We may not understand the reason for the pain, but we do know His plans are to prosper us and not to harm us.
Lord thank you for your correction bringing us back on the path of righteousness. Help us to discipline our self to stay close to you no matter what may come into our life. Teach us to love your correction and welcome your discipline when needed. In Jesus’ name Amen.
© Elizabeth Marks, author of ThinkOnIt Devotions and has a heart for encouraging others with God’s Word. For more devotions, bible studies and a recommended book store, visit http://www.ThinkOnItDevotions.com today.