“Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? … 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.” Hebrews 12:7,11
“You’re so mean!” I yelled this at my dad many times as a young person. Often, I had no interest in why I was being punished. At that time in my life, I wasn’t interested in learning from my consequences. I only knew that I did not like them.
I felt this way toward God for many years, too. Even after I surrendered my heart to Him in my late teens, it took me years before I understood that God disciplines me as my heavenly Father.
Although I had stopped throwing physical tantrums, I had tantrums of the heart. I got mad at God, and blamed others and my circumstances for the troubles I faced. I certainly didn’t want to believe God was allowing these things in my life for a reason. Nor did I think to ask Him to teach me through these hard times.
Until about two years ago. My husband was diagnosed with an extreme health condition, and instead of getting mad at God, I asked Him for help. Rather than asking God why He didn’t protect my husband from developing this condition, I started to ask Him how to trust Him, and what He wanted to teach me through these trials.
Not long after my husband’s diagnosis, a friend said something that still resonates with me. She said, “Don’t waste the opportunity to learn what God wants to teach you.” Often God uses trials in our life to train us to be more humble, more patient, more loving… more Christ-like.
Heavenly Father, thank You that I am Your child. Help me to trust You through all the difficulties I face. Please use the circumstances in my life to train me to live in Christ’s righteousness and peace. Amen.
Today, choose to praise and thank God throughout the day today, regardless of your circumstances. He is your heavenly Father, and He loves you — you can trust Him!
By Caran Jantzen
Used by Permission