My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline or be weary of His reproof, for the LORD reproves him whom he loves as a father the son in whom he delights.– Proverbs 3:11-2
As a general rule, I avoid doctors. It’s not that I dislike them, but I prefer to treat them like the fire department. I am glad they are there, but I never want to be in a position to need them.
Ever since I was a little kid, I have equated doctors to pain. While I didn’t take too many trips to the emergency room as a kid, I remember one especially painful time getting 3 stitches in my forehead after bad bike accident. I needed the stitches, but the process wasn’t one I remember with any fondness.
I can still see the very long needle the doctor had in his hand as he turned toward me and said, “this might hurt just a bit.” Yeah, just a bit. But to repair the damage, he needed to numb that area of my forehead. But all I could understand was this guy was hurting me with a very large needle.
Even now, I really hate needles. I’ll ignore pain and fight through most any ailment if I can avoid getting a shot. I know in the long run, the shot will be for my benefit, but the immediate pain is something I prefer to skip altogether. But unfortunately, too often I need a little pain – or really I need the end result of the pain from a doctor’s treatment.
This is especially true of treatment from the Great Physician. Sometime a little dose of His pain is really a good thing.
Here in Proverbs 3 we read that the LORD loves whom He corrects. It is His love for us results in our discipline. For us to receive correction from Him and to learn from that correction requires us to bow to His lordship over our life. We have to acknowledge His way trumps ours and submit to His constructive guidance. Much like a doctor giving us a shot, the initial pain is far overshadowed by the long term good result of the treatment.
But His discipline is more than just something we experience we are in need of correction. In some ways it’s closer to getting vaccinations. He prepares us of some rougher parts of life when we experience just a touch or two or His discipline. Of course, like any child will tell you, we really don’t like those vaccination shots. But we tend to learn more about Him and what He really wants us to be when we go through some of those times of discipline.
Just as a wise father lovingly disciplines his children so does our heavenly Father direct us – His children.
My advice? Get your shots! You’ll be better for it. God loves us and His discipline proves that!