Archive | November 13th, 2011

Challenges For Growth

November 13, 2011

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  1 Anyone who loves learning accepts correction,
but a person who hates being corrected is stupid. – Proverbs 12:1 NCV

1 Wise children take their parents’ advice,
but whoever makes fun of wisdom won’t listen to correction. – Proverbs 13:1 NCV

18 A person who refuses correction will end up poor and disgraced,
but the one who accepts correction will be honored.  – Proverbs 13:18 NCV

Disturb Us, Lord

Disturb us, Lord, when
We are too well pleased with ourselves,
When our dreams have come true
Because we have dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely
Because we sailed too close to the shore.

Disturb us, Lord, when
With the abundance of things we possess
We have lost our thirst
For the waters of life;
Having fallen in love with life,
We have ceased to dream of eternity
And in our efforts to build a new earth,
We have allowed our vision
Of the new Heaven to dim.

Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly,
To venture on wider seas
Where storms will show your mastery;
Where losing sight of land,
We shall find the stars.

We ask You to push back
The horizons of our hopes;
And to push into the future
In strength, courage, hope, and love.

– Sir Francis Drake  – 16th century English sailor

Our Bible study leads us to think a lot about gracefully facing our daily challenges. Our text leads us down a slightly different path. How can we benefit when we seek correction, or seek to be challenged, or seek to learn more? The selected Proverbs hint at some of the benefits, but look at what the Hebrew writer says:

“My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.” It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? – Hebrews 12:5-7 ESV (Note that he is quoting Proverbs 3:11-12)

Doesn’t a healthy loving household result from the discipline of a godly father? Do the members love each other less because of the discipline?

The poem/prayer attributed to Francis Drake is a very bold request to force us out of our comfort zone. Like Romans 5:3-5 it recognizes that in order to grow, to build patience and hope, we need to be tested. We don’t need to wait on life to bring these challenges to us. It would be much better to dream a little bigger, sail out a little further and be a little less satisfied.

How much more honorable is the Lord’s correction when we ask for it?

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