How the Gospel Applies to Discipline

My 10-year old niece has an iPod Touch primarily for music and games. Before you judge, you should know that she saved up her money and paid for half of it herself, but that’s not the point of this post. Because she was born in a day and age when children seem to know how to operate all technical gadgets from birth, she has managed to find a free texting app. I love it, because, just like the teenager she will soon become, she is much more likely to text me than she ever has been to talk to me on the phone. However, I have learned that there are some interruptions in our communication. And by interruptions I mean she gets in trouble and the iPod touch gets taken away.

For instance, recently she lied about when she had reinstalled the texting app. She used me as an excuse, saying she wanted to text me (aww, so sweet… for a lie) but her parents didn’t fall for it and she lost privileges.

She's not 10 here, but I'm younger. ;)
She’s not 10 here, but I’m younger. 😉

Now, did my brother take the iPod away so she couldn’t text her (favorite) aunt? Of course not. He took the phone away as a method of teaching her not to lie. Ultimately it was not punishment; it was grace.

God has recently disciplined me by taking something precious away, too. It hurts like crazy, and I don’t ever want to have to go through it again, but it’s working. It dropped me to my knees, restored my desire to intercede, and reminded me that I can do nothing apart from Him. He will not give His glory to another. He caused me pain for the sake of our relationship. I didn’t ask Him to. I definitely would not have chosen this method; but it has reminded me who He is, who I am, and how insanely ridiculous it is that He notices me.

The truth of the gospel is that God’s love is relentless so He disciplines us like a father disciplines his child, in our best interest and for His glory. Like the author of Hebrews says, if He doesn’t discipline us we’re not really His kids. So getting “grounded” is a reminder that I have a perfect Father who will not settle for letting me do things my way.