Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Tough Love

Sometimes dealing with children in a "tough love" manner is the most unpleasant thing to do. As a father, I really don't enjoy having to punish a child in order to discipline them. But, it is sometimes the best thing we can do for them. It can help teach boundaries, self-control, prudence, right judgment, etc. If we didn't, we would leave them to their own fancies and a child's fancies aren't necessarily the best thing in for them, despite what they would have you believe.

God treats us in the same way. He wants what is best for us and sometimes it isn't necessarily what we would choose. As the Sacred Scriptures tell us:
“Know then in your heart that as a man disciplines his son, so the LORD your God disciplines you.” - Deuteronomy 8:5

“because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.” - Proverbs 3:12

“Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. Moreover, 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.” –Hebrews 12: 7-11
Sometimes we do not want our crosses. We would rather trade them in and pick our own. Yet, God knows what we need more than we do and there are times we need to be molded through the fire of suffering or discipline.

This is a gift, if we have the eyes of faith to see it that way.

Thank you God for the trials you allow us to have. May we grow closer to you through them.

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