Devotion and Prayer for Week of October 2, 2011

Meditation for the Week of October 2, 2011

 

 

As a parent, I find one of the greatest challenges I face is the discipline of my children.  Questions of when to discipline, how to discipline, and am I being consistent are always on my mind.  I will admit that this is not the most enjoyable part of the job for me and I often find myself having to battle through my own feelings and emotions to make appropriate decisions.  But regardless of my personal feelings towards the discipline of my children, I believe that the most important question we need to ask is why we do it.

 

You see, a father and mother don’t scold, spank, or administer the proverbial “timeout” for the purpose of seeing them suffer.  Rather discipline is always done with an eye to the future.  It is best to learn at a young age that all our actions have consequences, whether good or bad.  As a father concerned for their future, discipline is a way of guiding their behavior so that later on they won’t fall into the hands of the authorities where punishment is much more severe and long-lasting.  It would be unloving of me to dismiss poor behavior and bad choices, allowing them to believe they can “get away with murder” without any consequences.

 

In the same way God doesn’t want us to run wild.  He directs and disciplines us in order to restrain us and keep us from harm.  Instead, God wants to protect us and make us heirs to the kingdom of heaven.  When the Corinthians were acting foolishly at the Lord’s Supper, and God allowed many to become ill and die, the Apostle Paul said to them, “If we were judging ourselves correctly, we would not be judged, but when the Lord judges us, he disciplines us so that we won’t be condemned along with the rest of the world.”

 

God disciplines his chosen ones and even sends us many trials and troubles to keep us from falling into the hands of the world.  We should understand that God disciplines us so that we will be saved, not condemned.  By disciplining us, he hopes to pull us back from the condemnation and judgment reserved for the world.  He doesn’t want us to be judged along with them.  As it says in John 3:17, “God sent his Son into the world not to condemn the world but to save it.”  This is good news for you and me, Christ didn’t come to judge us, He came to help us and to save us.

 Weekly Prayer

God of mercy; Like a father disciplines a child so you seek to discipline us.  Out of great concern and a deep love for us you don’t want to see anyone lost and condemned.  There are days when we feel you are angry with us, when your judgment feels very real in our lives.  Let us not turn our hearts against you but cling to your Word knowing that only a loving father disciplines his children.  In the name of Your Son Jesus Christ.  Amen.