Discipline. Chastening. Correction. Rebuke. These are words that do not stir warm feelings. We cringe at the thought of them, but these words should bring freedom. These words should inspire hope. These words are to shine light in dark places to make room for more light and love to come in.
The Lord corrects/disciplines/chastens/rebukes those whom He loves. (Hebrews 12:5-11, Proverbs 3:11-12). That’s not a scary thing. That’s not a “God’s disappointed in me” type of thing. That’s a freedom thing! The Lord’s desire is to bring us freedom (Isaiah 61) and abundant life (John 10:10). All He ever does is rooted in love. All He ever wants to do is display His unending, patient, merciful, kind-hearted love to us. When correction comes, it’s because there’s an area in our lives we’re not seeing Him and His love clearly. And His desire is for us to know Him, see Him, understand His character, nature, and goodness (see the entire Bible).
Think of getting a massage. If you have a lot of knots, it can be painful as the massage therapist begins to work those things out, but what’s the result? Greater mobility, less pain, relaxation, better rest, and ability to have more freedom to move. God does the same thing with our hearts and minds, as He carefully works out these knots in our thinking and the deeply rooted beliefs we hold. He’s carefully working all these things out and working them together for the good of those that love Him (Romans 8:28) to display Jesus.
We tend to dislike anything uncomfortable and want instant results. But God is never in a hurry and knows our discomfort can be used to produce a greater glory- fuller knowledge of Him. So far 2019 for me has been A LOT of messaging, but God is so faithful and each time He corrects me, through His Holy Spirit or a friend lovingly speaking into me, the results have been so good although the process to get there a little uncomfortable.
But take heart, friends, whatever area God might be calling attention to, lean in. Hold fast to Him and allow Him to prove Himself faithful by working out this area in your life to make more room for Him to display His love to you. You will get through it and be stronger for it.