11 My child, don't turn away
or become bitter
when the Lord corrects you.
12 The Lord corrects
everyone he loves,
just as parents correct
a child they dearly love.
If we look at life as being a journey that happens under the grace and provision of a loving God who provided a personal Saviour and a sustaining Holy Spirit, we can view pain and difficulty as a learning experience or as course correction.
Having anything negative or bad happen to us is always tough. My head and knees hurting and my car fender being destroyed in an accident is bad enough. If I agonize over the fact that it was my own fault and try to figure out what I am supposed to learn from it I only introduce an unnecessary level of pain. No, actions have consequences. Simple as that. Not everything that happens is a matter of God blessing us or rebuking/disciplining us. The promise that all things will work for good has a lot more to do with God teaching us a different way of viewing things than about Him diving in and altering the outcome.
Far too often we stumble around trying to determine whether or not the origin of these life experiences is happenstance, evil or God correcting us. The Book of Job is a wonderful examination of this subject.
The writer here in Proverbs encourages us to not `turn away` or become `bitter`. The simple story here is that
- we`d miss the value of correction which despite how wonderful and mature we are, is necessary and
- this is what comes from a natural relationship with a loving parent.
But the added consequence of turning away is that we turn our backs on a loving God who has promised us a great deal when we live in relationship with Him.
I would take it one step further. It`s counter-productive to spend a great deal of time trying to determine whether or not what happens to us is God correcting or rewarding us. Let’s simply thank him for the value of lessons learned and the course correction.
Father, I humbly submit to what you determine is best for my life. I commit my life to your grace and rest on the promise of your love and relationship which you have prepared for me and revealed in Christ.