Healing the Heart through Discipline
Last updated 2/1/2019 at 1:23pm
Often, when we hear the word discipline, we don't associate it with healing in our hearts and our lives. We often look for words such as comfort and empathy and understanding. In the Indigenous historical events of our lives many atrocities and abuses took place, so when we hear the word "discipline" we don't necessarily think of the phrase "healing our hearts." Yet, when we look at the Bible, God's most precious holy Word, we do see the word "discipline," and we do see it associated with the word "heal."
Let's look at a few statements from God's Holy Book. Ephesians 6:4 says, "Fathers do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord." God doesn't want us to be exasperated or frustrated or annoyed with Him. God wants us to be trained and instructed in His ways, so we can experience healing and be saved from harming ourselves.
Proverbs 10:17 says, "Whoever heeds discipline shows the way to life, but whoever ignores correction leads others astray." God, through Jesus Christ, wants us to know the way to life and not be led astray, because life in Christ brings healing.
Hebrews 12:10–11 says in reference to parents disciplining their children, "They disciplined us for a while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it." Being disciplined either by God or our parents is painful, but eventually it produces righteousness and peace, which are associated with healing in our hearts.
As an adult who is 50 years old, I still experience different types of discipline. Ever since I was a kid, I've had a bad habit of scratching scabs and picking at them. Well, when I went to my family doctor the last time, the doctor told me to stop scratching my leg and had to prescribe me an ointment to heal the wound I had, which was getting worse. She used stern words to correct me and instruct me in the way I was going regarding making the infection worse. If I ignored her correction, I would create a situation that is heading for strife and more pain instead of healing.
Job 5:17–18 says, "Blessed is the one whom God corrects; so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty. For he wounds, but he also binds up; he injures, but his hand also heals." God wants to get our attention sometimes for the sole purpose of healing us and sometimes that comes through discipline. Proverbs 3:11–12 talks about not despising discipline: "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." God disciplines us because He delights in us.
Are you despising the Lord right now because of some discipline you may have experienced from Him? If you are in prison right now, do you despise God and feel resentful towards Him? If you have lost a job or an opportunity because of having to be disciplined are you feeling resentful? I know from experience that God's discipline is not a happy or peaceful time when it takes place. I do not automatically feel grateful or thankful when being disciplined, but after time passes, I am glad for what happened. In the end it creates healing in my life that could not have come any other way.
As Job said (5:18), "But his hands also heal." God's ultimate way to heal us was to send His Son Jesus Christ to die for our sins and bring us back to God, because our sins separated us from God. Sin causes us to be separated from a life of healing. Even after we come to believe in Jesus, we must undergo different types of surgery from God so He can remove parts of our lives that hinder healing. Sometimes we are doing things that are causing an infection, like what was happening with my leg. My doctor didn't want to harm me, but she had taken an oath to seek my healing and look out for my best interests.
God made an oath, a covenant, with us through Jesus Christ, to take away our sin and bring healing. He wants the best for us. He wants His hands to heal you. Do you want to be healed? Can you feel His hands?
Parry Stelter is a Bible
teacher, author and
speaker. He is founder of
Word of Hope Ministries.
If you are interested in having Parry do a workshop on dealing with grief, loss and trauma, you can contact him at email@example.com.