“Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined — and everyone undergoes discipline — then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”
Hebrews 12:7-11 NIV
I was hesitant to post this verse, based on how many people I know that didn’t have fathers at all present, or men that did not try to be good. No matter what, this passage has been a huge part of my life.
See, discipline is a huge part of my life in more ways than one. First, I am a father. I have two children that are under 10 and I have to act as that discipline influence in their lives. Second, I have discipline in my life as the Father sees fit.
So, whether you are a mother or father, this relates to us all. We can get so caught up in the semantics of the Bible, but when we truly read it, to register in our hearts what it is truly saying, it is soooooo applicable no matter who we are, or where we are at in life.
Discipline. I remember as a child it was not fun. It was something that usually incorporated pain of some sort. I was spanked, I was grounded, I was put in time out! They all hurt, and they took something away to teach a lesson.
On the other hand, there was much discipline but it had nothing to do with doing something wrong. It was specifically for teaching me how to survive in the world I knew nothing about at that point. It was painful at times. “But Mom, I really want that toy!!!” Guess what, I didn’t get that toy…. And I really wanted that toy.
“But Dad, I really want that car!!” My Dad’s response, “If you want that car, you’ll need to pay for the entire thing yourself. I drove an old junky….” My Dad wanted to help me pay for part of my car and I got a Nissan Sentra… From the good old year of 1987. I paid for half. The stupid thing wouldn’t even get past 60 mph!! But, because he was helping pay for this $ 3000 car, his discipline was involved. He knew the potential consequences of a fast car with a 16-year-old boy. He knew the temptations. I remember being frustrated! I look back now and know why he did what he did. I couldn’t see it then, but I do now!
So, as I look back and look now at my life, I see such a resemblance. Many of us may not relate with my life, but the Father still works the same. He disciplines in love. He knows the outcome. My life has been an up-and-down rollercoaster business wise. I really couldn’t tell you why God has done what He’s done over the last eight years. But I do know that He has a plan. Sometimes I feel like I’m getting punished. That’s always my first reaction, but then I start looking at all the little things that have changed in my life. All the nuances where my character has developed, the ability to empathize with people I come in contact with, and I begin to see His plan unfolding.
If I had not gone through the last eight years of business the way I have, I would not be in God’s will. If I would have just stuck to real estate, I would have made more money, but I wouldn’t be in God’s will. If I had not chosen people over my own comforts, I would not be in God’s will. It isn’t my favorite, or exactly the way I saw my life going, but it has taught me invaluable lessons that help me relate and share with others going through their process.
Whether we are rich or poor, God has so much planned for us. We get caught up in the stuff….He couldn’t care less. He knows who we can be, and that has to do with relationships.
So, go find a person who needs that encouragement today. Build up someone around us. Love on someone, cause we never know where someone is at in their journey.
Have a blessed day!