My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline and do not resent his rebuke, because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in. Proverbs 3:11-12 (NIV)
I may have been thinking of your discipline incorrectly. How so? In the past, I have thought of your discipline only as some form of correction. Is that incorrect? No, I’m sure that thought is not completely incorrect. But I’m now sure it is incomplete. So, to think of your discipline as only correction is incorrect. What else is my discipline? Your discipline is teaching. Your discipline is training. Your discipline is your developing godly patterns and practices within me. That’s true.
What discipline or disciplines have I been developing in you? You have developed in me the discipline of meeting with you in your word. We talk together about your word. You help me to understand your word. You have caused me to meditate on your word. You have helped me to take your word deep into my heart and mind. You have led me to take hold of your word by putting it into practice. You have encouraged me to pray your word. You have used your word to change my heart and transform my mind. Your word has been disciplining and strengthening my mind so that I can think your thoughts. Your word has grown my faith and made me able to go and do your will. All the work that you have done in and through me with your word has been a form of discipline that you have been developing in me. That is very true. That is very good.
What other discipline have I been developing in you? You have been developing in me the discipline of meeting with you in solitude and silence so that I can hear from you. Why is this so important? The world is a busy and crazy and noisy place. If I want to hear from you, I will need to withdraw from the frantic activity of the world. Yes, you will. If I want to grow in prayer, I will need to set aside a time and place for you to teach and train me. Yes, you will.
What other discipline have I been developing in you? You have developed in me the discipline of finding and using the spiritual gifts that you have given to me. It has always been your purpose and plan to use me in your service. You want me to go and do what you ask of me. You want me to bear fruit for kingdom and bring glory to your name. Yes, I do.
What other discipline have I been developing in you? It seems like you are continually and daily developing some new discipline in me. Can you name a few more? Yes, I can. You have been developing in me the discipline of relying on you rather than on myself. You have been developing in me the discipline of giving thanks to you in all circumstances. You have been developing in me the discipline of forgiving others just as you have forgiven me. The list of discipline or disciplines that you are developing in my life is almost endless. Yes, it is. Will you continue to welcome my discipline in your life? Yes, I will. That will be very good.
Lord, I welcome your discipline in my life. Correct my behavior. Change my course. Help me to follow you. Bring my life into alignment with your will and your ways. Help me to live a life that is good and right and pleasing to you. Help me to know and do your will. Amen
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