By: Pastor Jarren Rogers
“Loving correction is part of love.” – Dean Merrill
Did you ever have your parents lovingly correct you? Sometimes it was simple. Get your elbow off the table. Stop slouching. Wash your hands. Other times it may have held more weight. I think that they are a bad influence on you. I don’t think that you’re making the right decision. I’m worried about the direction that you’re headed.
Regardless of whether you agreed with your parents’ corrections, we can all agree that each and every time, it was spoken out of love. Our parents corrected us because they cared about us and wanted to see us succeed.
The Bible has something to say about these corrections:
“Whoever heeds life-giving correction will be at home among the wise” (Proverbs 15:31).
You see, many times we can be blind to our own shortcomings. When we make a decision, say something, or act a certain way, we may not see anything wrong. But an outside eye might tell us differently. You might be thinking, “I’ve had a lot of people try and tell me what to do or speak hurtful things to me from a place of judgment.”
I agree with you. All too often, the corrections we face come from the criticism of hypocrites and people who like to see us fail. But, look at the important distinction that the writer of Proverbs makes. He says that we should always heed life-giving correction.
There are people that God can use to correct our behavior or decisions. People who are sensitive enough to the Holy Spirit that their correction always comes out of a place of love and a desire to see us succeed. Whether it is a pastor, a spouse, or a parent, God can speak through others to correct our character.
But sometimes the correction comes directly. It may come in the form of our conscience. A small voice in our head that says, You shouldn’t have said that. That’s God’s correction.
Other times it is that pit in our stomach after we do something. That sudden weight on our shoulders that we try to ignore. That guilt that reddens our face and draws our gaze to the ground. That’s God’s correction.
Just like our earthly father’s correction, our Heavenly Father corrects us because He loves us and wants to see us thrive.
With life-giving corrections from God, whether directly or through other people, our character is being transformed for the better.
Parents: Explain to your children why you correct them. What are your intentions behind it? Explain that God also corrects them for similar reasons.