No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace. Hebrews 12:11
First I should explain that for just under a year, I have been seeing a chiropractor. I started at 3 times a week, and have backed down to 2 (most weeks). We have "therapy" first where the muscles are loosened so that when Dr. Burke adjusts us, everything moves more readily back into alignment. At first, Bean Boy, Baby T and I were the only patients. Recently my husband and Little Bit have begun going as well. Hubby was very amused to sit back and watch. He would giggle, ask a million questions (we wonder where Bean Boy gets this) and just really be an active observer. But, when it came to be his turn...well, it was my turn to sit back and giggle! He really does not like to be adjusted. He complains, stiffens up, and later says things I can't repeat! It is so funny! Laying completely still makes him feel completely vulnerable. Because he won't relax and lay still, the effectiveness of the therapy is lessened. He also won't go as often as recommended. It makes Dr. Burke's job harder and it makes it take longer, with more repetition in order to achieve release and properly align the spine, and a longer course of therapy in general due to his less frequent visits. Once he is properly aligned, he will agree that he can feel improvements, and apparently, they are good enough to keep going back for more.
Back to the discussion at hand.... Hubby was able to use the analogy of the chiropractor to show how discipline is good. He pointed out how Bean Boy has made far greater improvements than Hubby as far as his alignments go. But, Bean Boy has been far more faithful to go, to do therapy at home, and to cooperate while there at the chiropractor. Bean Boy has been far more willing to be vulnerable to Dr. Burke and to trust her with the work she does than Hubby has. He just gets right up there on the table and lets her do her thing. Hubby then explained that when we are "stiff-necked" and stubborn before authority, whether it be parents, a boss, or God, we are much like Hubby is at Dr. Burke's. If we do not submit, allow ourselves to be vulnerable, and trust, we cannot see progress in our hearts. However, when we trust our authority, submit and allow ourselves to be vulnerable, God is able to adjust our hearts, and it won't take as long, or be as painful. The only thing I have to add to this analogy, is that the therapy that keeps us "loose" and ready to be "aligned", is meditating on God's Word. If we "hide His Word in our hearts"....we might not "sin against Him." Psalm 119:11 (my paraphrase).
I'm afraid that sometimes, this analogy isn't just applicable to my son.... sometimes I resist God's therapy. I resist God's discipline in my life. I won't trust Him. When I find myself under some sort of discipline, I find it especially difficult to submit, and am more likely to rebel. I want to argue and stiffen up, and go before Him less and less. Isn't that just like us?
My son, do not despise the Lord's discipline or be weary of His reproof, for the Lord reproves those He loves, as a father the son in whom he delights. Proverbs 3:11-12
Hubby and I will fail Bean Boy. We won't discipline perfectly. We will make mistakes. Not intentionally of course, but obviously, we don't have all the answers, can't see every situation perfectly, and can't truly judge his heart. But our Heavenly Father has none of the limitations Hubby and I have. He can see every situation and all sides of it. He won't make mistakes and He does have all the answers. His discipline for us is perfectly selected to adjust our hearts back into alignment with His will. Isn't He good?