‘God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in His holiness.’ Hebrews 12:10 NIV
Discipline. In Matthew 18, we’re encouraged to ‘become like little children.’ Strange advice from Jesus? He goes on to say that otherwise we ‘will never enter the kingdom of Heaven.’ (Matthew 18:3 NIV) Hey, but what about maturity? Well, this call is for us to be childlike not childish—there are plenty of times in the Bible when we’re called to be mature and not act in childish ways (1 Corinthians 14:20, for an example). But there are many qualities of a child we need to display.
One of the first of these is discipline. Just as children need to accept discipline from their parents, we need accept God’s discipline. The greatest and wisest father of all is God. He not only loves, He is love. And as His children, He disciplines us out of love. The Bible says: ‘The Lord corrects those He loves, just as parents correct the child they delight in.’ (Proverbs 3:12 NCV) None of us like discipline, it’s not something we look forward to or enjoy. But His discipline has a purpose. ‘God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in His holiness.’ Through discipline and correction we become more like Him. Tough, but true.
God’s discipline is for a reason—it’s always for our own good and it’s not just God exercising His power and authority. He’s not angry with us or disappointed with us, He just wants us to be more like Him. We can’t correct our mistakes if we don’t realise we’ve made them, or realise how we can do things differently. So let’s be childlike by being open to discipline and by respecting our Father who is correcting us out of love.
SoulFood: Is 45–48, John 7:14–24, Ps 30, Prov 28:25–28
word4today an adaptation of The Word For Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright © 2017
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