My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the LORD reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights. Proverbs 3:11-12
This morning, I felt God’s hand on me, not as a father comforting His son, but as the Father disciplining His son. I felt awful, I felt the anguish of my sorrows and sins, and I felt comfort, all at once, knowing that He loves me. I praised God for the discipline. I actually praised Him for it. Then, as is usual, He showed me even more He wants to remove from my life, pulling the veil from my eyes, and showing me how, even more, He desires me to rely on Him and no one else.
Don’t get me wrong, He has given me the Church as well, but sometimes I feel like, being in the position I am in, I am supposed to be strong for everyone else, I can’t show vulnerability, and I need to put up a front. Yet that’s not what Peter, Paul, James, John or the rest did. Jesus showed His vulnerability, and He overcame by His reliance upon the Father through the Holy Spirit and the Word.
Loved ones, a father disciplines those he loves, and God disciplines us because He loves us. If we don’t receive the discipline, we have to wonder if we’re in His grace and presence. So we should rejoice in it, because the discipline leads us back to Him, His will, what is good, and pleasing and perfect. So I will thank God for His discipline. I will seek Him out, and I will invite you to rejoice in the same. God loves us, and He love us too much to leave us in anything other than the image of His Son. He held nothing back from us, not even the life of His own Son. So when He disciplines us, rejoice. Repent, confess, and seek Him out.
What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us”? But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.
Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?