I have always hated the word “stupid” until suddenly one morning I found a very appropriate use for it in God’s Word. “Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid” (Proverbs 12:1 NIV). This verse states that those who love discipline also love knowledge. The very fact that I seek knowledge in the Word doesn’t necessarily mean that I love correction. If I want to grow in His grace and be trained by His Word, I have to live what I’ve read. There is a definite difference between knowing what to do and then doing it. Doing it means I’m submitted to His will. Living what I have learned reveals that the knowledge He has imparted has made a difference. To hate His correction makes me a fool. To love discipline means I am teachable.
“A rebuke impresses a man of discernment more that a hundred lashes a fool” (Proverbs 17:10 NIV). Am I a person of spiritual discernment? Or am I so spiritually dense that I have to receive one hundred lashes when I need to make a change in my life? What must God actually do to get my attention? “If you had responded to my rebuke,” God says, “I would have poured out my heart to you, and made my thoughts known to you,” God (Proverbs 1:23, NIV). He wants to pour out His heart to me! If I want to receive His knowledge that makes a difference in my life, I can’t be closed to His lesson. In fact, if I do close myself to His lesson, I have given Him a spiritual slap in the face. What exactly has He offered to give me? His body broken for me. His blood poured out in sacrifice. His heart. I can’t discern His thoughts without experiencing His cross. I can’t understand His resurrection without understanding the costly price He paid.
“You have forgotten the word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: ‘My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lost heart when he rebukes you. Because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and punishes everyone he accepts as a son’” (Hebrews 12:5-6, NIV). Losing heart means being crushed in spirit. Losing heart means that I might give up before the goal is even in sight. God instructs me not to make light of His correction and not to lose heart, but to persevere. He corrects me because I belong to Him. His discipline is His encouragement that He sees His best in me.
Lord, I want to be spiritually attuned to your voice, and not in need of one hundred lashes. Forgive me for the times that I have ignored you. I sometimes lose heart when I am disciplined. I allow it to make me bitter instead of spurring me on to greater heights in you. When I need to be disciplined, Lord, I want to learn your lesson. Lord Jesus, never let me forget that your reward follows correction, or that you discipline me because you love me as your child. Dying to self means that I learn to live for you. Whatever it takes, Lord. Whatever I need.
©2017 Lynn Lacher