Thursday, November 12, 2015

Daring to Discipline - Martin Wiles

I know, O LORD, that your regulations are fair; you disciplined me because I needed it. Psalm 119:75 NLT

I didn’t enjoy getting it as a child, giving it as a parent, or administering it as a teacher…but it had to be done. 

My parents were strict disciplinarians. My father thought about what disciplinary methods would work best. My mother often disciplined out of anger. 

As a parent, I didn’t enjoy disciplining my children, but it was necessary if I expected them to stay on track. Like me, they had a sinful bent. I tried various techniques, some identical to the ones my parents had used on me. Some worked; others didn’t. 

I’ve also found discipline necessary as a teacher of middle school students. Many of them have that same tendency to buck the rules. 

The writer knew God’s regulations were fair, but he obviously had a tendency to stray from them. When God sent discipline, he knew it was because he needed it. 

I was born with sinful tendencies. Everyone else is too. These tendencies make me want to test the limits. I tested them as a child and as a teenager. And there have been times I’ve done the same as an adult. Discipline always followed when I was caught.

I’ve also tested God’s limitations. Had I written the rules, I may have added or subtracted a few. But I didn’t. God did. I know his rules are fair, and he gives them so I can truly enjoy life. 

As my parents continually reminded me that they knew what was best for me—though I doubted it at the time, so God reminds me of the same. He knows what it will take for me to experience a full and fruitful life and established the rules accordingly.

When I break God's rules, he disciplines. I may not like it, but deep down inside I know his discipline is for my good as are his boundaries. If I respond by learning my lesson, life will be more pleasurable.

When God sends discipline into your life, remember it’s because He loves You and desires what’s best for you.

Prayer: Father, though we don’t enjoy it at the moment, we thank You for the love You demonstrate through discipline.

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