“For the LORD disciplines those he loves, and he punishes each one he accepts as his child.” Hebrews 12:6 NLT
I got many a spanking as a child (well not as much as my brother) for being mean and sassy…the sassiness persists lol but I don’t think I’m mean lol. No-nonsense maybe, but not mean. Anyway, I used to do some bad things, like slap my brother or kick him in the stomach or just punch him…I think it was because I didn’t have any girl cousins my age. A proud dress-wearing tomboy I am, thank you. LOL
But Lord knows I used to dread getting that whipping. My daddy had this belt, that we kids called ‘the belt.’ No matter where we hid it, WE had to go find it to get ready for the beatdown. I hate that thing lol. I don’t know how it lasted all those years. 3 kids…who all were not spared the rod…Jesus lol. Anyway, before the punishment ensued, my momma would often talk to us about what we did and we would start crying. I don’t know about my brothers, but I cried because of the beating, not because of what I did, because I know I meant to do it. Like I meant to slap him lol. It was the beating that hurt and left me thinking, was what I did really worth all this…?
Fast forward to adulthood. I have made many mistakes and the threat of being disciplined by God was enough to scare me straight. For every choice there is a consequence, both good and bad–being that consequences are simply the resulting reaction to an action (thanks physics lingo). I have gone places I should not have gone and done things I should not have done. I was simply being disobedient and doing what Marquita wanted to do. And some of the consequences were not worth the trouble. Let me be frank and honest here if I may. I have sinned before (gasp!) and as a result, in one particular circumstance, it cost me my direct line of communication with God, until I was away from the origin of the sins. God cannot be in the presence of sin, and thank God for Jesus because after the whipping I got (uncertainty it caused, rejection by the party involved) I was right back where I needed to be.
As my parents told me, the whippings and beatings were done out of love. If my parents did not love me, I would have fallen to the wayside and every time I went astray they would not have exerted the energy to reel me back into the fold. God is the same. In both the Parables of the Lost Sheep and the Prodigal Son, God’s love for us is evident. He would search to the ends of the earth for a lost sheep (like you and me) who by our wayward living get whipped until we decide to return home. He welcomes us with open arms for a loving embrace like the father of the Prodigal Son. (See Luke 15)
Sometimes life will whip us with hard times, the Word and the Holy Spirit will whip us with conviction, and we will allow the enemy to whip us with guilt, condemnation and defeat. Having been there and over doing that, haha, I rest in how those things have changed me and I look back now on those beatings with respect. Because God loved me so much, as my parents did, they saw fit to intervene and stimulate me to change courses. That is what being corrected is all about…serving as a catalyst for you to change.
“My child, don’t reject the LORD’s discipline, and don’t be upset when he corrects you. For the LORD corrects those he loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights.” Proverbs 3:11-12 NLT