Summary: A sermon about God’s Discipline and how His hand is in all things.
Discipline and training are foreign concepts to many people in America today. So it was for one young man who approached his dad about a getting a car when he turned 16. His dad said son, I will help you if you begin to discipline yourself. So he wrote a contract with the dad for the next 6 months. The dad made the contract that if the son did these three things he would get him a car. 1st he would have to go to church and Sunday school regularly with no complaining. 2nd he had to bring his grades up at school and do all his chores at home. Finally, he would have to cut that hair to a respectable length.
The six months passed and the son wanted to review the contract with his father. He said dad, I want to talk with you about the contract for the car. The dad said, sure. The son said, Dad, I’ve been a regular at Sunday school and church. I only missed when I was real sick that one week. Dad said, that you have. In fact I talked to your class teacher the other day. He encouraged me. You prepare for your lessons, you memorize your verses, and ask great questions.
Dad, I’ve improved on my school work. Dad said that you have. You had one B and the rest were all As. It has been your best report card in a long time. I am proud of you. The son said, well then why haven’t you taken me to get a car. Dad said, “Son, you haven’t cut your hair yet.” Well dad, you see dad, I’ve been reading the Bible and I understand now that Jesus the Lord and Savior had long hair. So what do you think about that? Dad, said, “Son, I’ve read the Bible too and I have noticed that Jesus never drove to where he was going, he walked...”
When you get down to it, we all, especially men like to balk at discipline. Dave Wren may have taken it too far... I am still not buying you a car Dave! But, discipline from God is always for our benefit if we will receive it.
5 And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: "My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, 6 because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son." 7 Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? 8 If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. 9 Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live! 10 Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. 11 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.
WHEN GOD DISCIPLINES:
Don’t avoid it:
Illus: Driving through Texas, a New Yorker collided with a truck carrying a horse. A few months later he tried to collect damages for his injuries. "How can you now claim to have all these injuries?" asked the insurance company’s lawyer. "According to the police report, at the time you said you were not hurt." "Look," replied the New Yorker. "I was lying on the road in a lot of pain, and I heard someone say to the Texas Ranger that the horse had a broken leg. Without another word, Texas Ranger pulls out his gun and shoots the horse dead on the spot. Then he turns to me and asks, ’Are you okay?’ What do you think I told him?"
When you run from discipline, you are ultimately running from God. I am not suggesting that God desires for us to look for trouble or to allow evil into our lives. But whenever a challenge comes, whether because of a foolish, sinful choice in your life, or because of a choice someone else has made, you need to look for the hand of God in it. God would never allow anything into your life for no reason. He intends to train you in godliness no matter what comes your way.
RECOGNIZE THE REASON FOR IT.
God love is determined.
When God calls you His child, he is determined to get close you. When God gets close to you things will have to change. You will have to change. He wants to make you like Him. He wants to make you Holy. It is a lifelong process.