For Our Good

From the sixth hour until the ninth hour darkness came over all the land. About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”—which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:45–46, NIV 1984).

God has said, “Never will I [abandon] you; never will I forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5. NIV 1984).

My Musings – “[Don’t] equate the discipline of God with the abandonment of God.” (Tim Gustafson, “Our Daily Bread,” April 14, 2023). There are probably times when we feel like God has forsaken or abandoned us. But this cannot be. Jesus, bearing our sins, was forsaken by His Father on the cross, so we would not have to be. So, feeling abandoned is just that, a feeling not a fact.

What then do we do with feelings of abandonment? We search for the real facts behind the feeling. It could very well be one of two types of discipline. The first type of discipline is to punish for the sake of enforcing obedience and perfecting moral character. The second type of discipline is training that corrects, molds, or perfects moral character. Both are necessary, at times, but neither should be equated with abandonment. Just the opposite.

My Advice – Well, actually not mine. “Do not make light of the Lord’s discipline. God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. 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.” (Hebrews 12:5 and 10-11, NIV 1984).

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