Things are not always as they seem.
“… God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline?” Hebrews 12:7b
There is a beauty that comes with discipline.
Parents discipline their children for their good so that they may function and succeed in this world.
Speaking of our earthly fathers Hebrews 12 continues,
For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness.
All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” Hebrews 12:10,11
We want those results.
Can these be obtained by lying down in comfortable ‘flowery beds of ease’ as we would like?
Moses warned the people that it is in the full and satisfied and prosperous times that they needed to beware and watch themselves lest they forget the Lord their God and fail to keep His ways.
When they found themselves in
“great and splendid cities which you did not build, and houses full of all good things which you did not fill, and hewn cisterns which you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant, and you eat and are satisfied,
then watch yourself, that you do not forget the Lord who brought you from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. You shall fear only the Lord your God; and you shall worship Him and swear by His name. You shall not follow other gods, any of the gods of the peoples who surround you, ..” Deuteronomy 6:10-14 (see also 8:11-20).
In ease we forget, we relax, we let down our guard; it’s what we do.
We find that we are no longer desperate for God because we fill ourselves with so many other ‘nice’ things.
We find ourselves no longer ‘hungering’ and ‘thirsting’ after God and His righteousness (Matt 5:6) because we are full of the world and other things. We say in a sense just as Moses warned, “My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth” (Deut. 8:17), and we start to act self-sufficient.
This is what we do. It is our natural tendency left alone in ‘ease’.
Therefore we have
the necessary beauty of
discipline from a Father Who knows what is best
and knows exactly what we truly need,
that which produces the peaceful fruit of righteousness,
that we may share in His holiness.
Have you possibly been resisting the very work that God is attempting to do for your good and His glory?
Thankfully He will not ever give up on us, but let’s choose to cooperate and learn and grow the first time around.
Spend some time today asking Him where He is doing a deep work and how He is calling you to respond.
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