In the message “Into The Storm” we saw that, although not all storms are from God, He sometimes sends us into difficult situations to get our attention and draw us closer to Himself. These storms may be used to teach us basic truths or gently nudge us back onto His path. But the storms may also be used to make major corrections in our course or adjustments in our character. Each is a form of discipline. Each is given with His perfect love. And each should be viewed as a wonderful opportunity for growth.
“The Lord disciplines those He loves, and He punishes everyone He accepts as a son. Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father?”
The discipline we endure while in the storm teaches us who we really are, who God really is, and the importance of our eternal relationship with Him. When we receive the gift of Salvation through faith in Jesus, we are adopted as a child of God; “heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ” (Romans 8:17). Our Heavenly Father loves us simply because we are His child, not because of what we do or accomplish. He desires nothing more than for His children to say, “I love You, Daddy!” But He also loves us enough to shape and mold us until we are “conformed to the likeness of His Son” (Romans 8:29).
None of us have yet been perfected. We are all flawed vessels with many rough edges, and the process of being conformed to the likeness of Jesus – the process of smoothing rough edges – can be quite uncomfortable: “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it” (Hebrews 12:11).
We have so much “self” that gets in the way of our relationship with God, so many hindrances to truly loving Him and following where He leads. We must desire a closeness with God above all else. So much so, that we are willing to pray: “Heavenly Father, do NOT withhold Your hand of discipline from my life. I submit to Your molding and shaping and ask that You remove anything which stands between us.”
His hands of discipline are always purposeful and precise, and administered with great love. They are never out of control like so many angry hands of the world. His hands welcomed us into His Kingdom by grace and are now there to guide us on a wonderful journey. Our values and goals will begin to change as we draw closer to God and keep our eyes focused on Jesus. But along the way, as our rough edges are continually smoothed, we must learn a joyful submission to His loving hands of discipline.
Have a Christ Centered Day!
God’s Daily Word Ministries
**** Reading Plan ****
Mar 19 Numbers 28:15-29:40; Luke 3:23-38; Psalm 62:1-12; Proverbs 11:18-19
Mar 20 Numbers 30:1-31:54; Luke 4:1-32; Psalm 63:1-11; Proverbs 11:20-21
Mar 21 Numbers 32:1-33:39; Luke 4:33-5:11; Psalm 64:1-10; Proverbs 11:22
Mar 22 Numbers 33:40-35:34; Luke 5:12-28; Psalm 65:1-13; Proverbs 11:23