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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Sunday, June 21, 2015
Who loves his child more—the father who allows the child to do what will harm him, or the one who corrects, trains, and even punishes the child to help him learn what is right? It’s never pleasant to be corrected and disciplined by God, but his discipline is a sign of his deep love for us. When God corrects you, see it as proof of his love, and ask him what he is trying to teach you.
We may respond to discipline in several ways: (1) We can accept it with resignation; (2) we can accept it with self-pity, thinking we really don’t deserve it; (3) we can be angry and resentful toward God; or (4) we can accept it gratefully, as the appropriate response we owe a loving Father. (NLT)
Hebrews 12:5-11 – And have you entirely forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you, his children? He said, “My child, don’t ignore it when the Lord disciplines you, and don’t be discouraged when he corrects you. For the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes those he accepts as his children.”
As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as his own children. Whoever heard of a child who was never disciplined? If God doesn’t discipline you as he does all of his children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really his children after all. Since we respect our earthly fathers who disciplined us, should we not all the more cheerfully submit to the discipline of our heavenly Father and live forever?
For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always right and good for us because it means we will share in his holiness. No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening—it is painful! But afterward there will be a quiet harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.
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 spirits and live! — Hebrews 12:9 (NIV)
Suzanne S. Austin-Hill (Florida) titled her story “HONOR YOUR FATHER;” here is Suzanne’s story:
“My father was known for his ‘I’ll-give-you-the shirt-off-my-back’ generosity. But when I asked him for a dollar to buy a toy from a classmate, I was surprised that he responded quietly and thoughtfully, ‘No.’ He explained that the toy was a want, not a need.
“The next day when my father wasn’t home, I opened his top dresser drawer, stole a silver dollar, and bought the toy. A few days later, when he discovered the silver dollar missing, he knew immediately that I was the thief. He told me I had no reason to steal from him and that I could depend on his promise to give me everything I needed. He expressed a deep disappointment in me, yet ended his stern reprimand by saying, ‘But I still love you.’
“When I reflect on how my father handled my disobedience, it became clear to me that he exemplified the kind of love that God, my heavenly Father, has for me even when I fall short.
“God said, ‘Honor your father’ (Exod. 20:12). Today and every day I honor my father for his loving discipline, and I give thanks for the unconditional love God shows to us.”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Even in my disobedience, God loves me.
Prayer: Dear God, thank you for the example of loving earthly parents and for your unconditional love for all your children. Amen.
Prayer Focus: FATHERS
To read other stories in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
For more Helpful Inspirational Material:
SUFFERING, SUFFER: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/suffering-suffer/
PREPARATION, PREPARED, PREPARING: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/preparation-prepared-preparing/
ASSUME, ASSUMPTIONS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/assume-assumptions/
INTENTIONS, INTENTION: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/intentions-intention/
JUDGING, JUDGE: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/judging-judge/
DESIRES, DESIRE, DESIRED: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/desires-desire-desired/
EXPERIENCE, EXPERIENCES: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/experience-experiences/
COMPARE, COMPARISONS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/compare-comparisons/
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