Tuesday, January 10, 2017

All In The Family

Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons…If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are … not true sons” Hebrews 12:7-8.

Boom! Welcome to this new Bible Study with me! Where is the passage that entices me to turn one more page…fill in one more blank...stop and bask in the sweetness of His word. It is certainly not this one, but doesn’t mean that it is not intended for me. Right off the start as a wo...man who has worked diligently allowing God to rid my mind of performance based love, this feels scary. I have no desire to retake conquered grounds! God has lovingly and relentlessly shown me that everything that flows into my life is from His motivation of love. Titus 2:11-12 renames discipline to teaching. There certainly are times when my actions have produced consequences and suffering. But what about the trials that assert themselves into our lives, allowed by God, that teach us things about others…things about ourselves…things about God.

When my sister Beth was diagnosed with Bile Duct Liver cancer we as a family were thrust into a trial like no other. Within the 3 generations who experienced this everyone was walking through this fire. We each were being taught and trained through the journey. While others were affected by our journey they were not in the family so couldn’t experience it in the same way. 

It is the same way with God. If we are truly in His family, we are His children who will have troubles and suffering. Paul goes on to say, ‘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 12:11. I don’t know about you but I am here waiting for my ‘later on.’ We all have been taught through painful circumstances and many are walking through them right now. Sometimes while going through a trial the best comfort is the knowledge that no trial lasts forever. There is a beginning and an end, and living in the tension of the middle is a difficult one at best. But looking back, I know that not knowing the length of time for any of my trials was the gracious providence of God. He loves us with an apologetic love that takes us through joy, despair, training and trusting. Our trials affect our perspective and reframe our character. We must do the work and keep the faith so that it will produce in us things we need for future trails and service to others.

Until our ‘later on’ arrives we must keep our eyes on Him, maintain believing hearts and have complete confidence in His faithfulness.

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