I’m always impressed by what Scripture has to say about those who respond positively, submissively, and obediently to the Lord’s discipline! It just NEVER turns out bad! Its not pleasant, but it’s ALWAYS profitable (check out Hebrews 12:1-13)!
Today in my Bible reading during “coffee with the Lord” I read the following words about those who experienced the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple – of those who experienced the pain of exile in Babylon. Here was God’s promise to those who responded positively to His discipline…
“At that time I will be the God of all the clans of Israel and they will be my people. I, the LORD, affirm it!” The LORD says, “The people of Israel who survived death at the hands of the enemy will find favor in the wilderness as they journey to find rest for themselves. In a far-off land the LORD will manifest himself to them. He will say to them, ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love. That is why I have continued to be faithful to you. I will rebuild you, my dear children Israel, so that you will once again be built up. Once again you will take up the tambourine and join in the happy throng of dancers. Once again you will plant vineyards…and enjoy their fruit… Hear what the LORD has to say, O nations. Proclaim it in the faraway lands along the sea. Say, “The one who scattered Israel will regather them. He will watch over his people like a shepherd watches over his flock.” … They will come and shout for joy on Mount Zion. They will be radiant with joy over the good things the LORD provides… They will be like a well-watered garden and will not grow faint or weary any more. The LORD says, “At that time young women will dance and be glad. Young men and old men will rejoice. I will turn their grief into gladness. I will give them comfort and joy in place of their sorrow… My people will be filled to the full with the good things I provide.” (from Jeremiah 31:1–14 the NET Bible)
So here’s the deal… If deep in your heart you feel like you’ve been experiencing the pain and stress of God’s discipline – you know that you’ve messed up and failed Him and are suffering the consequences… Hang in there, acknowledge your sin, submit to the Lord, do what He tells you, learn what He’s trying to teach you, depend on the loving character of your Heavenly Father, and expect him to fulfill the truth embedded in Jeremiah 31:1-14 on your behalf… Depend on it – He will!!