For the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes each one he accepts as his child.
~Hebrews 12:6 NLT
She knew what she’d done—and took her punishment willingly.
Our little Chihuahua-terrier mix has a sweet tooth. After many episodes of her getting into candy, suckers, and chocolate of various types, we learned to put away the trash can, shut doors, and remove any candy within her reach while we were away.
But one Valentine’s Day we forgot. Our oldest grandson’s teacher had given a Valentine party for the students in her class. Levi came home with a large bag full of candy, which he placed on the floor by my wife’s recliner. When the phone rang, telling us my wife’s car was ready at the repair shop, we all piled into my old car and headed to get it.
When we returned and walked into the house, Rita lay crouched by my wife’s recliner. Since she sometimes greets us that way, I thought nothing of it—until I walked into the den. In the floor, lay an empty box of conversational hearts, or what was left of it. The box top had been torn off and a few hearts lay scattered about. The rest were in Rita’s stomach.
“Riiiita,” I said in the most chiding voice I could muster. (I’m not too good at scolding her since she’s my little lap dog and spoiled to boot.) She laid her ears back and cowered a little lower, but remained where she was.
“Riiiita.” My wife’s booming voice brought a different reaction. Rita scurried to the bedroom and scooted into her kennel—and stayed without the gate latched. “She knows what to do when she’s in trouble,” my wife said.
After a few minutes—when I thought she had learned her lesson, even though I knew better—I said, “Rita, you can come out now.” And she did with her tail wagging and her tongue going.
I’ve never enjoyed punishing any animal I’ve ever owned, but I know it’s necessary if they are to learn what they should and should not do. I consider it more training than discipline, although that’s what discipline is.
God disciplines because we are His children, and He loves us …
Take God’s chastening with a good spirit.
God disciplines because we are His children, and He loves us—just as my parents disciplined me because I belonged to them and they were responsible for my behavior. “But consider the joy of those corrected by God! Do not despise the discipline of the Almighty when you sin” (Job 5:17 NLT).
But consider the joy of those corrected by God!
Do not despise the discipline of the Almighty when you sin.
~Job 5:17 NLT
I’ll be the first to admit I don’t much like God’s chiding—and sometimes, like my dog, I crouch down when I know it’s coming. But occasionally, I’ll do what she did: take it like a man (or, in her case, a woman) because I know God has my best interests at heart. I’ll crouch a little lower because I know I’ve done wrong and then willingly go to my kennel—or wherever God sends me—until He sets me free, which is when He knows I’ve learned my lesson…at least for the moment.
When you get off track—or eat what you’re not supposed to—take God’s chastening with a good spirit. After all, He does it with love and for your own good.
How do you react when God disciplines you?
Father, thank You for caring for us through disciplinary measures.
Copyright 2020: Taking the Chastisement: Author Martin Wiles: All Rights Reserved
Meet Our Contributor
Martin Wiles is an author, English teacher, and freelance editor who resides in Greenwood, South Carolina. He is the founder and editor of Love Lines from God. Wiles is the Managing Editor for Christian Devotions, the Senior Editor for Inspire a Fire, and a Proof Editor for Courier Publishing. He has also served as Web Content Editor for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas.
Wiles has authored A Whisper in the Wood: Quiet Escapes in a Noisy World (Ambassador International), Grits & Grace & God and
Grits, Gumbo, and Going to Church (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas), Morning By Morning, Morning Serenity, and Grace Greater Than Sin (America Star Books) and is a contributing author in Penned from the Heart (Son-Rise Publications), Rise (Chaplain Publishing), and Love Knots: Stories of Faith, Family, and Friendships (VineWords Publications).
He has served as Regional Correspondent and Sunday school lesson writer for the
Baptist Courier and has also written for Lifeway’s Bible Studies for Life curriculum.
He has also been published in Christian Living in the Mature Years, Mature Living, Open Windows, Proclaim, The Secret Place, The Word in Season, Upper Room, Light from the Word, Reach Out Columbia, Mustard Seed Ministries, Journey Christian Newspaper, Common Ground Herald, The Quiet Hour, Power for Living, Halo Magazine, Joyful Living Magazine, Christian Broadcasting Network, Sharing, Today’s Christian Living, These Days, Plum Tree Tavern, Eskimo Pie, The Scarlet Leaf Review, Creation Illustrated, LIVE, Purpose Magazine, Stand Firm, The Banner, Relevant, and Lutheran Digest.
He is a regular contributor to Christian Devotions, PCC Daily Devotions, Theology Mix, Inspire a Fire, The Write Conversation, and Vine Words and is a regular writer for the Dorchester County Eagle Record, the Orangeburg
County Times and Democrat, and the Greenwood County Index Journal.
Wiles’ next book, Don’t Just Live…Really Live is under contract with Ambassador International.
CONNECT WITH MARTIN WILES AT:
Managing Editor, Christian Devotions
Senior Editor, Inspire a Fire
Proof Editor, Courier Publishing
On The Web: Love Lines From God
Grits, Gumbo, and Going to Church https://www.amazon.com/Grits-Gumbo-Going-Church-Martin/dp/1798510375
Grits & Grace and God https://www.amazon.com/Grits-Grace-God-Heaven-Southern/dp/1645261379
A Whisper in the Woods: Quiet Escapes in a Noisy World https://www.amazon.com/Whisper-Woods-Quiet-Escapes-Noisy/dp/1620208652