“Tough and Tender” described my earthly father – In even a greater way it describes my Heavenly Father!

father speaking to son

As a child I was fortunate to have a wonderful father… He was both “tough and tender” – certainly no “pushover” – he was more concerned about developing character in his sons than giving them everything they wanted. Looking back in retrospect, I am grateful – it wasn’t always pleasant at the time, however.
As a “child of God” I have a wonderful Heavenly Father! And He is no “pushover”! If my earthly father was concerned about the development of my character, think about how devoted to the development of my character my Heavenly Father is! I thought of that as I read the following verses from Psalm 119:73-77 this morning…
“Your hands have made and fashioned me! Give me understanding that I may learn your commandments. Those who fear you shall see me and rejoice, because I have hoped in your word. I know, O LORD, that your rules are righteous, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me. Let your steadfast love comfort me according to your promise to your servant. Let your mercy come to me, that I may live; for your law is my delight.”
I think that’s why the writer of Hebrews wrote this reflection…
“Have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? ‘My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.’ It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” (Hebrews 12:5–11 ESV)
Yes, “tough and tender” described my earthly father – In even a greater way it describes my Heavenly Father!

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