“Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.”
Hebrews 12:11 NKJV
There are times when I wonder why I came out the way I did. In my world, there are men who are successful and others who are incarcerated. There are others of my generation that never survived, as they fell victim to drugs, violence and other kinds of premature death. When I go to the core of the matter I have to remember my father.
When I got out of line, my dad was there to spank me. I sit in this living room looking at my parents wedding picture. I thank God for my father, for the chastening that he brought into my life, for the integrity that he demonstrated day after day, as he taught me right from wrong. He was the first step in my refinement.
The chastening that he brought to me was wrapped up in love. He wanted us to do the right thing, to be good people, to honor the family. He wanted us to be all that we could be. As I have walked through this life, I have seen the chastening of God, via the experiences with my dad. Just as my father loved me, my Heavenly Father loves me more.
I admit I was blessed to have a good earthly father to use as a reference. Ceding authority over my life to the Lord has been much easier. I have ministers to people who did not have that blessing. It is sometimes difficult to create the view of God the Father with one who was abused by his or her earthly father, or those who never had one. There is often a tendency to refuse the correction of the Lord. Through much prayer, and the word, it is awesome to see people, betrayed by fathers of flesh and blood, delighted in the Heavenly Father who fills all the voids.
I have received that chastening with great joy. There was a moment in my spiritual walk when I asked the Lord to lay His heart on my heart, to give me His mind, to empower me to see others as He saw them. In my flesh, asked for great things, but brought little movement toward the work. God used a myriad of trials and more blessings, to mold me and answer the prayers. Like the chastening of my father, I know that God loves me.
I have seen God do His perfect work in me as He molds me and sculptures me in the image of Jesus. It is a painful process, one that involves His relentless chiseling away of flaws that were once considered accents.
I have seen the things in my life that I held dear, be counted as loss for the glory of God. In the beginning, I mourned, now I plead for Him to take more. I can see the difference in my life, and the work He has lain before me. I want His glory to be unobstructed, by the obstacles of my life before Jesus.
In the loss, I have found gain. In the momentary pain, there is joy. I am grateful that God has moved so in my life and am delighted that He will not stop until His work is competed. I am His sculpture for His work and His glory.
“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”
Ephesians 2:10 NASB
“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 1:6 NASB
I look back at all the pain and the travail and I see the work He has done. I remember all the times He carried me through life and trial. He is the glorious God.
Believers, know that He is for you! He will not leave you or forsake you. I am one for whom His faithfulness has been proven. I hope that my last breath will be in praise of Lord Jesus!
Non believers, if you have read this far, God is working in you. Come to Him today. Know that He will save you from your sins. Jesus died, was buried and rose again, that you may be forgiven and made new. Your sin has destined you for eternity in hell. Jesus died to forgive those sins and pay your sin debt. In Jesus you can have eternity in Heaven. You can’t do it on your own. No good works will do it, only faith in Jesus.
Even rainy days are succeeded by sunny days, so the pain of chastening will give way to joy!
THE PRAYER CHAIR IS OPEN! Send me your requests!