Everyone responds to the love of God. Most people, when the clearly understand and see the love of God, receive it. However there is another aspect of God’s love that not many think about or even realize that they must respond to.
Today I want to ask you. How do you respond to God’s chastisement?
Create in me a clean heart, O God and renew a steadfast spirit within me. ~Psalm 51:10
This is what we pray, when things are going well and we desire to be pleasing unto the Lord. We know that there has to be something within us that He needs to fix; something that only He can see. For some of us, we pray this earnestly, believe that we are being purged daily.
Then God hits us with a big one. A THING within our hearts that we didn’t know was there. Something that was hidden. Something that only the eyes of the Holy One could see.
What do you say?
What do you do?
How do you react?
For one, she simply shrugs off the still quiet voice within, that spoke truth into her soul. She goes on about her daily business, as if she never heard the voice and her conscience never confirmed it to be true. This one has hardened her heart.
I want to ask you a question. Is this you?
For another, she hears the voice and her conscience confirms it, but she denies the truth. She simply says no. She refuses to be changed and to go through the process of what the “change” that she had requested will require. This one has, without knowing it, begun to turn from the Lord.
So, how about her? Is this you?
Then there is this lady. She has asked God to cleanse her heart for years and God has done so, in increments. Then one day, He shows her a hidden blemish. It is one that has the power to, if not changed, pierce into her soul and throughout her being. He not only shows it to her, but He uses the word to chasten her, telling her that she was wrong and how she could have avoided the blemish. She, for a moment, feels shame and sulks because she did not know that her flaw had even existed. In fact, she wonders how she could have missed it. She looks to the Lord, upset because she is being corrected, but then realizes that it is for her good.
For the Lord disciplines the one He loves, and chastises every son whom He receives.” ~Hebrews 12:6
Emotions arise at the thought of being disciplined and the fear of what is to come, attempts to turn her around. Then she remembers…
Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you. ~Deuteronomy 31:6
Courageously, she moves forward, knowing that she is in need of Her Savior’s redeeming power and the forgiveness of Her God. She needs the Holy Spirit to comfort her.
Dare I ask?! Is this you?
If you are this woman, I want to tell you that you are not alone. Many of us find ourselves in a place where God reveals the truth about our heart’s condition. The revelation is sometimes shocking and at others, not. However, the thing that is hidden is not the focus of this discussion. The focus is how you handle the chastisement of the Lord.
Once you see that you are being corrected, you must remember that the Lord loves and you wants you to get this thing together so that you will not be defiled. You do not want to be defiled by the sin of unholiness. Yes, we have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus, but sanctification is a continual process. The flesh that we are in still has things in it that need to be purged.
So how do you respond to the chastisement of God?
Will you repent of your ways and ask Him to lead you into all truth?
Will you turn to the Word of God and allow it to cleanse you? Will you allow it to cleanse your mind? Will you choose to be a hearer of the word and not a doer only?
How will you respond?
Will you stand opened armed facing the desert, knowing that this road will not be easy, but realizing that its worth it? Or will you turn from the Lord and run in the other direction, slowly, convincing yourself that you are not turning away?
Now that I have asked you all of these questions, I want you to take some time to ask them of yourself and, yes, answer them too.
Your prayerful sister,