Typically we do not like being corrected when we are wrong. Many people have a difficult time even admitting to being wrong. Eliphaz, Job’s friend, thought this was true for Job. Eliphaz thought Job was in need of a good dose of divine discipline and that Job wasn’t owning up to what he did. Eliphaz felt that Job should bear his suffering with happily, because he deserved it, and then God would return to blessing him once again with peace, prosperity, and a large family. However, for Job, there was nothing to confess. He had not sinned. Job’s trials was not the result of God disciplining him.
Although Eliphaz’s word in Job 5:17, did not apply in this instance – they do have some meaning for us when God has to discipline us. Why should we be happy when God corrects us?
God only disciplines His children. Hebrews 12:7 says, “Endure suffering as discipline: God is dealing with you as sons. For what son is there that a father does not discipline?” We God disciplines us, we can be assured that we belong to Him.
God’s discipline is an indication of His love for us. Proverbs 3:11-12 says, “Do not despise the Lord’s instruction, my son, and do not loathe His discipline; for the Lord disciplines the one He loves, just as a father, the son he delights in.” When God disciplines, it is always out of a response of His love for us
God’s discipline shapes us into His image and teaches us to be holy. Peter wrote: “As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: ‘Be holy, because I am holy’” (1 Peter 1:15-16). That is the purpose of God disciplining His children – to transform us from our old sinful nature into becoming more like Him. God’s discipline teaches us to be holy.
When God disciplines, it is always out of a response of His love for us and to shape us more into His image. That is the purpose of God disciplining His children – to teach us to be holy. — click to tweet
God’s discipline brings repentance which restores our fellowship with Him and deepens our faith breaking the power sin has on us. While not all testing and trials are indications that we are being disciplined, God does use trials as a way to bring us back to repentance and set us back on the path of following Him. If the purpose of discipline is to make us more like Christ and teach us to be holy, then the result of discipline is a renewed fellowship with God and a deeper and stronger faith which empowers us to break the chains of a particular sin that held us in bondage to it. James 1:2-4 says, “Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that he may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”
God’s discipline is an indicator that God is at work in you. Philippians 2:13 says, “for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.” As He works in our lives, He is busy refocusing our faith, realigning our heart, re-motivating our hands, renewing our love, reshaping our mind, and reviving our witness.
- When we sin, our focus is on ourselves. When God disciplines, our focus shifts to the trouble and trials we are facing as a result of our sin. But as God disciplines and we repent, our focus returns to Him and the plans He has for us – plans to prosper us and not to harm us, plans to give us a hope and future (Jeremiah 29:11)
- As we repent and turn back to him, our heart becomes realigned to His and our desires become about bringing Him glory rather than ourselves.
- When our heart becomes realigned, our hands are re-motivated to the tasks that God calls us to do and we are ready to serve Him.
- As we experience God’s forgiveness our love for Him is renewed and we can stand in awe that the Holy, Righteous, Merciful God forgives us when we least deserve it.
- As we re-experience God’s love and forgiveness, our mind is reshaped so it is once more able to dwell on things above. Philippians 4:8 says, “Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable — if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise — dwell on these things.” It’s very hard for our minds to dwell on these things when we are caught up in the middle of sin. God’s discipline helps us reshape our minds and thoughts so that we can once again dwell on these things.
- Lastly, God works in us to revive our witness. Once we sin and it comes to the attention of others, our witness for Christ is damaged. But through confession and forgiveness, our witness can be restored and others see the work of Christ in our lives.
Why should we be happy when God disciplines us? Because it indicates we are His children who He loves and because His disciplines shapes us into His image as He teaches us to be holy. His discipline brings us to repentance which restores our fellowship with Him and grows our faith and it indicates that He is at work in our lives refocusing, realigning, re-motivating, renewing, reshaping, and reviving us.
God, Love and Marshmallow Wars: This book contains 365 daily challenges for couples to strengthen their relationships to each other and with God. Couples will complete activities such as Scripture memory, conversation starters, relationship builders, learning about Biblical marriage, romance builders, personal reflections, and date ideas. Click here to purchase your copy. (This link will open a new widow and take you to Westbow Press’ bookstore.) It is also available at Christian Book Distributors, Amazon, and Barnes & Nobel
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Julia is CEO of Wellspring Christian Ministries, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping people and couples develop a passionate relationship with God. A public speaker, conference trainer, event planner, and blog writer, Julia is a two-time graduate from Grand Canyon University with a bachelor in Psychology and a masters in Professional Counseling. Saved as a child and raised in church and in a Christian home and private Christian School as a Pastor’s kid, Julia has taught Sunday school, led music, played the piano, served as Children’s Director, and engaged her gifts in many other areas of church life. Previously employed with the Florida Baptist Convention, Julia organized events and led conferences for church ministry assistants.
Julia enjoys sharing her journey as a growing Christian with others looking for a deeper connection with God. Through Bible study and her own life experiences, God has given Julia a passion to help couples understand God’s design for marriage while they learn to place God first in their marriage, cultivate meaningful relationships, build intimacy, and address the tougher issues that come in every marriage so that they can experience a marriage that honors and glorifies God. Julia also loves mentoring, teaching, and working with women to help them learn to live as Godly women.
With her history and experience growing up in both small and large churches, Julia enjoys bringing top level quality events to churches of all sizes. Her father largely pastored small churches and therefore she understands that these vital parts of the believing community need to be good stewards of the resources God provides them with. This knowledge inspires her passion for being available with a fresh perspective for those who want to provide their congregations with meaningful spiritual growth opportunities.