Posted by: missionventureministries | September 14, 2017

IS GOD TRYING TO GET YOUR ATTENTION? – Hebrews 12:11

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. (Hebrews 12:11)

God’s discipline and chastening is an issue that all Christians should learn about, because sooner or later, most will probably discover what it means to be disciplined by the Lord.

According to the Bible, the Lord’s chastening is generally considered painful and unpleasant (Hebrews 12:11), intended as a “reprimand” to change one’s behavior. In the Old Testament, the ordeals of the Children of Israel, including defeat by enemy armies, were often referred to as chastisement for sin and rebellion (Deuteronomy 11:2). But the purpose of chastising is not to destroy (Psalm 118:18), but to lead to repentance (Jeremiah 31:18-19) and to restore God’s blessing (Psalm 94:12).

Chastisement is not a bad thing. Although unpleasant, discipline is vital in the life of a true believer who is in rebellion to God and the commands of the Bible. It is the correction and discipline of a loving Heavenly Father toward His children. God’s love us as a parent; therefore, our sinful behavior makes it necessary for God to discipline us with spiritual, mental, physical pain and with financial losses. The Bible says, “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, because the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and He chastens everyone He accepts as His son” (Hebrews 12:5-6).

As we grow older, we recognize that the discipline of our parents was a necessary means to keep us out of trouble; and we start realizing that they corrected us not because they enjoyed it, but because they loved us.

The Bible says, “…we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live? 10 For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness (Hebrews 12:9-10).

God wants what is best for us. For this reason, He will discipline us if we persist in sin, and will administer correction if we dishonor His name and His commands that are in the Bible. He says, As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent” (Revelation 3:19).

You may ask: How does God chastise His children? This is a personal matter with each individual. Many times, He will lift his hand of blessing and allow difficulty, physical pain and trouble to come our way, not to destroy us, but to humbly bring us back to our knees in repentance.

Some people have a tendency to exhibit a continuously disobedient and rebellious spirit; therefore, these people may have to be constantly chastised with losses and sometimes chronic pain to keep them from wrecking their lives and causing further dishonor to our Holy God.

When chastisement comes, it will be accompanied by conviction of our sin and rebellion. God invites us to come to Him in repentance and humility, so that He may restore His blessings. As it is so wisely written: “He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion” (Proverbs 28:13).

Is God trying to get your attention? How much pain and loss will you have to endure until you fully surrender your disobedient spirit to Him and start obeying His Holy Word?

When we begin to wander from the course God has set for us, He will take all kinds of measures to capture our attention and protect us from harm. He has a variety of ways to help us to pay attention, and here are some of them:

A Restless Spirit  – Sometimes God gets our attention by making us restless – Proverbs 15:16 tells us: “Better is a little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure and turmoil with it.” If you experience restlessness and things are not going right, then stop and pray, “Lord, are You trying to say something to me?”

Conviction that comes Directly from the Bible. God gets our attention when we attentively read the Bible because it is our guide and blueprint for living a life of peace, freedom and victory. We must be sensitive to the Holy Spirit when we read the Bible, so that He can guide us as we desire to be more like Christ.

A Spoken WordGod also gets our attention by using the words of others. The Lord gave a message both to young Samuel and to the old priest, Eli, through this method (1 Samuel 3:4-18). If several people in a short span of time begin telling you the same thing, then ask the Lord if He is trying to speak to you through them.

Or in an Unusual Way – God might get our attention in a number of very unusual ways, depending on the severity of our stubbornness and the overly self-sufficient person that we might be.

But remember that no matter which method He uses, He is trying to get our attention because He loves us.

The Father always knows exactly where we are in our journey of faith and precisely what it will take to get our attention. So stay alert and when things start occurring ask Him what He is trying to tell you, and then listen … do not simply hear, but obey. And do not be like the ones Isaiah spoke of in chapter 29:13 where “The Lord says: “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is based on merely human rules they have been taught.”

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