“For the Lord disciplines him whom he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.” (Hebrews 12:6)
The word ‘discipline’ is closely related to the word ‘disciple.’ To be a disciple is to be a student or to learn something and learning itself is discipline. As disciples of God, the book of Hebrews this morning tells us that there are times God disciplines us because He loves us and He wants us to learn endurance.
As the saying goes: “Never regret a day in your life: good days give happiness, bad days give experience, worst days give lessons, and best days give memories.” The book of Hebrews says: “For the moment, all discipline seems painful… later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those trained by it.” Painful moments are training moments.
Are you currently experiencing pain, stop thinking about when it will end. Start thinking instead about what God is trying to teach you from this experience. If we take our time to count our blessings, we will discover that it is our most painful experiences that were most beneficial to us in the long run. Indeed, we cannot but agree with St. Paul that all things actually work unto good for them that love God. (Cf. Romans 8:28).
The fact is, I have never seen a student who does not complain about school, a student who doesn’t feel stressed by learning. Learning is not funny! That is why the book of Hebrews says: “Lift up your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees.” Find a way to smile so as not to miss the lessons God is sending to you. Don’t be a bad student, don’t give up on learning because you find the subject (discipline) too hard.
In today’s Gospel passage, Jesus said: “A prophet is not without honour except in his own country and in his own house.” This saying is very true. We have a tendency to look down on what is ours. Jesus was respected in other places but his own people looked down on him, they saw him simply as the son of a Carpenter.
Like Jesus’ kinsfolk, we need to ask ourselves today: “Why do I look down on what is my own? What is stopping me from seeing beyond the Carpenter’s son? Why is it that I cannot see the hand of God even in midst of this painful situation I am facing right now?
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, free me from despair and from over-familiarity. Amen.
Bible Study: Hebrews 12:4-15, Psalm 103 and Mark 6:1-6).