“Wounds from a friend can be trusted.” Proverbs 27:6 NIV
When I was in college, a writing professor returned one of my papers with some remarks that were critical and upsetting. I was living with my parents at the time and couldn’t wait to show the paper to my father, certain he would join me in my outrage. When I returned home my father was working the night shift, so I left my paper on the kitchen table with a note that went something like this, “Dad, can you believe how this professor has criticized my work?”
The next morning I saw that my father had read my note and left a reply. There in his bold handwriting were the words “Dana, I have read your paper, and I think your professor has made some valuable comments.”
I was mad. And crushed. I fumed around the kitchen muttering things like, “I thought you loved me!” and “Whose side are you on anyway?”
My tantrum lasted most of the morning. And then it began to fizzle. How could I argue against my father’s love? How could I question whose side he was on? On many occasions my father had sacrificed his own time to sit and help me write papers for school. Often he had spent time talking with me about my future. He helped me choose a college and was paying part of my expenses. He was my academic cheerleader. Why would he hurt me?
Love demanded it. My father knew if I went to school with a hard and arrogant heart I would never become the person I could be. He knew if he hurt me for a moment he could help me for a lifetime.
Our Heavenly Father loves us dearly. Sometimes he will tell us tough things. We should accept those things with a humble and teachable spirit, trusting that he is working for our good, even when it hurts.
“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
because the Lord disciplines those he loves…”
Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best;
but God disciplines us for our good,
that we may share in his holiness.
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 12:5, 10-11 NIV