Punishment was one thing I dreaded as a child. There was someting about “I’m going to tell your dad!” or “Wait right here while I get the belt.” that tore my nerves up. I recall one punishment distinctly – the spanking I got after spitting in my cousin’s face. My dad turned a deaf ear to my self-defense excuses, and he made sure I didn’t repeat that mistake again! I didn’t think so then, but in retrospect, I realize that he loved me enough to steer me from the wrong path.
God also loves us enough to redirect us from evil. In Proverbs, Solomon makes this especially clear: “… the Lord corrects those he loves …” (Proverbs 3:12, New Living Translation). God is so loving that He sends mild discomfort (uneasiness) before we make a tragic mistake, as if to say, “I wouldn’t do that if I were you.” If we ignore His warnings, then He’ll plead with us until our hearts soften (that’s conviction, by the way). And if we still ignore Him, then He’ll send trouble to help us acknowledge our errors.
Thank God for His corrective love. Truly, He leads us in the path of righteousness, so His name will be praised (see Psalm 23:3).