“Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.” Colossians 3:20
To paraphrase my pastor this morning:
Discipline of a child is using every tool available to guide and form that child into the person God wants them to be.
When I heard these words, I knew that they applied to more than raising kids. Yes, the apostle Paul was addressing the issues of the young Colossian church and how they should be expected to live their lives as believers in Christ Jesus. However, the entirety of the Bible must be studied, read, meditated upon. So, the following verses came into my mind.
“Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:4
“And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of Him: For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?” Hebrews 12:5-7
So, if we are to become as little children, humbling ourselves as such, we are then placing ourselves under the parental guidance and molding of God, the Father. He, as our ultimate Parent, our very Creator God, will have to provide discipline. All of this led to a better understanding of what it means to be a disciple of Christ.
As a disciple, we are discipled, meaning taught, guided, molded. A part of this is learning discipline in Christ through being disciplined (chastised) by Christ.
For so long, I have not liked the chastisement. The spiritual chastisement has been, to me, just like my childhood. I heard only the anger, disappointment, and frustration. But, that was not God. That was an interfering voice from the Enemy. Because God loves me, and the truth is, I am His.
“For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth.” Hebrews 12:6
Finally, I am beginning to understand how Paul could say that he gloried in his infirmities. He knew that Christ loved him and that God used all things for good for those who love Him in return.