My friend, Jack, has a short list of people he totally respects. He told me that recently, and then he told me who is at the top of that list. His Dad. He said, "Don't think that meant I always did what he said when I was a kid, in fact, the usual script went something like this: Dad told me to do something or not to do something and because I'm stubborn I'd go ahead and do what I wanted! After which my Dad would spank me, after which I would do it Dad's way." And then Jack smiles and he said, "Now let me show you the kind of rocket scientist I am." I began to think, "You know Jack the story always ends the same way, you end up doing what your father says. Either you do it when he says it or you do it after you get spanked. But either way you do it." Now, he said, "Here's where my scientific mind kicked in. Why not eliminate those middle steps where you get spanked and just do what he says." Hey! Do I have brilliant friends, or what?
Well, I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You about "Avoid Spankings."
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Hebrews 12:9-11. Here's what God says, "We have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live! Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good that we may share in His holiness. 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."
The day you put your trust in Jesus to be your Savior you are born into the royal family of God and God becomes that always loving, always fair, always there father that our heart is hungry for. His love for us is expressed in His gifts to us, His care for us, His leadership, and through His discipline. When we're out of line, God, in His love, spanks us. It says, "...for our good," in this passage. Now, it ain't fun when God spanks you, but it helps shape you into the person He saved you to be and you end up with the peace that comes from making no regrets decisions.
About Jack's rocket scientist conclusions: when you know your father is going to spank you if you stubbornly do it your way and that you're probably going to end up obeying him in the end, why not skip the spanking? Why not do what your father is telling you to do now without the painful persuasion?
You may not have considered what's happening to you right now as a spanking from your Heavenly Father but that might be the reason (for the pain). Especially if you've been resisting Him in some area of your life. It's not just a matter of God having His way. Any way but His is a road to disappointment, and regrets, and scares, aborted happiness so He's bringing some discipline into your life to get your attention and change your direction.
If that is the case and you miss the point of your pain or just keep going your own way, do you know what's going to happen? God isn't going to give up, He loves you too much for that. He'll just turn up the heat, escalating the pain until you obey your Father. The ultimate outcome will probably be the same, no matter how you respond to the spanking. You will ultimately submit to God's way sooner or later, after a little pain, or a lot of pain. Now, take advantage of my friend's scientific thinking, why not eliminate any more pain? Why not do what God said to do, now! It's the road you were made for anyway. Is your way really worth all this pain?