In this day of our journey deeper and deeper into the Father’s Heart, let’s look at how much we’re influenced by the fear of punishment. Does the discipline of a good father always mean punishment? Could it be that we wrongly interpret the pain of discipline as a bad thing?
Do we want to hide from God when he disciplines us? Or do we run to him with thanksgiving because he has taught us something valuable?
Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. (Hebrews 12:7-11 NIV)
Very early in life I realized that if I learned from other people’s mistakes, I could avoid getting into trouble with my parents. When my brother or sister got punished, I observed what they had done wrong and determined not to do the same thing. This didn’t protect me from making my own mistakes and erring in other ways, but it did set me on a life-long course of making it a top priority to learn the easy way how to do what’s right….
Why is obedience so difficult at times? Why do we rebel? The answer lies in the question of what motivates our obedience: Is it the fear of punishment? Or a genuine love for God? If it’s the fear of punishment, of course we want to rebel from that kind of Father! If it’s love, we want to please our Father just like any child who wants to do good deeds for a parent out of sheer appreciation.
If it’s love, our obedience is grounded in the confidence that God knows what’s best for us. But do our decisions always show this confidence?
Day 10 on the journey includes:
- The role of repentance in discipline
- The real meaning of discipline
- Hidden blessings
- Find the Mercy in God’s Discipline
© 2021 by Terry A. Modica