Discipline is Good

Not too long ago, I was talking with the Student ministry Bible study on Sunday mornings about discipline and how it is not always connected to punishment. We discussed different lessons that we’ve learned that came with pain, and lessons that came with joy. Some of the painful lessons included “The stove/oven is hot” and “don’t kick a shotput because they’re solid.”  

Lessons that came with joy included “how to steer a sled” and “how to make baked goods” which also helped the painful lesson that the oven and pans are hot…

Discipline is really about learning. We need to ask, what are we learning, and who is teaching us? What is the goal of our learning? Does the person teaching us care for us?

Sometimes when we are learning a discipline, we may be corrected or punished and we think the one giving the punishment doesn’t like us, or hates us. When it comes from God, it is from a place of love. Let’s take a quick look at Hebrews 12:3-11

Consider Him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted. In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? 

My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by Him. For the Lord disciplines the one He loves, and chastises every son whom He receives.”

It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, that we may share His holiness. For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” We all have parents who love us and have tried to train us up in a proper way, they made goals for us and wanted the best for us. They only trained us for a little while, but God is training us, teaching us, making us disciples for our whole life. Sometimes it may be painful, but the purpose is to yield the peaceful fruit of righteousness.  We are being brought up to be more like Him who loved us.   

The most striking part of this whole text is the inclusion within this discipline. It means you are God’s child and are loved. If God didn’t love you, He’d leave you to wallow in your sin, BUT instead, He calls us to repentance, leads us on a path to righteousness and guides us with His Word. It may hurt sometimes, but the important lessons often do. Be encouraged through the discipline from God and know that you are a baptized and beloved child of God.

-Josh Cromley, Director of NextGen Ministries

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