“My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline, and do not resent His rebuke, because the Lord disciplines those He loves, as a father the son He delights in.” — Proverbs 3:11-12
Whether we are athletes, coaches or fans, we want our children to have warm feelings about us, and it’s not easy to say no to our kids or grandkids. When we struggle for the courage to gently discipline our children, we could picture horses in our mind’s eye. A quarter horse runs a quarter of a mile in about 20 seconds. Some quarter horses are clocked at speeds of 55 miles per hour for short distances. A thoroughbred runs 35-40 mph for longer distances of a few miles.
Horses like to run in open pastures with plenty of grass. If a family bought land next to a four-lane highway and cleared most of the trees for a pasture, then a tall, sturdy fence would be essential to stop the horses from running out into the traffic. Though a good fence is a major expense, it would cost more not to protect the lives of the galloping horses.
When King David raised his sons, he did not set boundaries for them. Of course, David was a great musician, psalm writer, shepherd, soldier and king. Nevertheless, he didn’t love his sons enough to discipline them for their own good. “Now Adonijah, whose mother was Haggith, put himself forward and said, ‘I will be king.’ So he got chariots and horses ready, with fifty men to run ahead of him. (His father had never rebuked him by asking, ‘Why do you behave as you do?’ He was also very handsome and was born next after Absalom)” (1 Kings 1:5-6). Therefore, Adonijah and Absalom caused David and all of Israel much grief since nobody ever corrected them.
In lovingkindness, God sometimes sets up obstacles to prevent us from harming ourselves. So it is important to submit to God’s will even when we don’t understand or feel stifled. “My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline, and do not resent His rebuke, because the Lord disciplines those He loves, as a father the son He delights in” (Proverbs 3:11-12).
When we want to be like a raging stallion or mare without any limits, remember that Jesus submitted to the Father’s will as an example for us.
— Bill Kent, Pastor of Memorial Baptist Church, Sylvania, Ga.
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