Tough love not punishment.

I can only imagine God when it comes to his children. I’m a mom of two and I know that parenthood could get complicated very quick. It could get so crazy with two kids, that I can’t even begin to process being a father/parent to a whole global! What I do know is that being a parent requires a lot of moments of tough love. A lot of moments where we pray for grace and guidance. A lot of moments where we atomically rather give tough love and avoid punishment. Punishment has such a condemnation feel to it. The Lord does not condemn us and warns us not to condemn one another but to forgive.

Although punishment gets avoided by many people whether their parents, marriages, single people, professionals in their careers, siblings, and every other role we have in this world; tough love always precedes as punishment. When did this confusion happen? When did this confusion not get addressed but remained as the new normal behavior?

We are not here to condemn and take the judgement role. This is very dangerous to do yet easy for people to forget it. The measurement of forgiveness you offer someone will be the same measurement use against you. The measurement of condemnation you push on someone will be pushed right back to you. The Lord remains us in Luke 6:37-38, “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” This is one of the many ways we self destruct then pray for God to take us out of. When we are getting condemned, we should ask ourselves “who did I condemn”?.These parables in Luke was not for entertainment or a good read in the Bible. It’s to warn us that this walk is difficult but if you can stay away from such act; it will make the path more enjoyable than painful.

No one is perfect in this world although many are perfect at being spectators. We will never be able to avoid those individuals who are placed in our path just to critique every move we do. They will always be around and you will constantly shed grace and love in their direction. It’s easy to say how wrong someone is or doing but not easy to correct their own mistakes. Your eye sight will only be able to see what it’s striving to see. For all these reasons the Lord guides us to lean on him and not our own understanding (Proverbs 3:5).

Which leads me to this point! The word punishment is easily used and condemnation is easily placed on someone. However I believe where we get confused and lost is that the Lord needs to correct us. He must correct us in times of being wrong. It’s not a punishment or a condemnation how people make you feel it. It’s him loving you enough to fix your mistake and showing you a way out of your wrong doings. In 1 John 1:8-10 “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.” It continues in 1 John 2:1-2 stating, “My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.”

He sheds light of truth because in truth we are set free. He is aware of our short comings but because of this we still must be corrected. Just because God is a God who knows all and sees when we are about to fall short, doesn’t mean he should unseen it and bypass it. In 2 Timothy 2:14-19, “Keep reminding God’s people of these things. Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen. Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly. Their teaching will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, who have departed from the truth. They say that the resurrection has already taken place, and they destroy the faith of some. Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.”

He warns us before He even mentions his wrath. The punishment is the very last thing we see. Aside from that we see a God who consistently warns us to repent and fall right back in his path of truth and light. We must fear letting down God and care less of people’s thoughts of ourselves. People could try to judge, punish, and condemn but only God has that true power. Brothers and sisters we must correct each other if God sends us to. It’s not being judgemental is helping each other deliver the right message and not incorrect contexts. Speaking amongst your peers of how your brother or sister is wrong, is wrong. We shouldn’t find it entertainng when someone is wrong. We should pray to God and ask how we can help fix this wrong if it’s God’s will for it to be done by you. So I know it’s easier said than done, but don’t fear those who don’t have the power to push such acts against you. Trust in the Lord and do not grow weary for God is in control and has the final say and act in everything! So when you are feeling tough love, it’s ok! See it for what it is and not what you feel! Not all emotions are bad but God does warn us to not lean on our emotions because they can decieve us. It’s just the Lord loving you too much to let you go on uncorrected. If he corrects you he can keep using you. Correction is the best way to grow and learn. But if you refuse correction you are self destructing your own life and going against God. The more you walk in this walk with the Lord and accept every correction that is God approve, the more you will grow strong and be able to lead others closer to God!

God is on your side I promise !!!

Blessings!

-Victoria 💛

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