“And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons:………..

“My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord,
Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him;
For whom the Lord loves He chastens,
And scourges every son whom He receives.”

If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons. Furthermore, 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? 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. Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” Hebrews 12:5-11

“This is not what I want you to write,” the Holy Spirit told me. “This is bitterness. Empty your heart of it.” That’s essentially what He said. Almost word for word. As best I recall. Ouch.

Yes, ow. Truth? I couldn’t even see as I was writing my heart was filled with bitterness. Old bitterness. Hurt. Amazing how I didn’t even recognize it! But that’s exactly what can happen with sin if we’re not careful. We can get so accustomed to it dwelling in our hearts or spewing forth in our actions that we don’t even see it. But the Lord in His love, mercy, grace, wisdom, and perfect will bring correction by His Holy Spirit in line with His Word.

Just like He did that day. Know what I needed to do? Oh, sure, I needed to get rid of that little piece of writing. But, most importantly, I needed to respond to the Lord’s chastening with REPENTANCE.

So I sat on my little bed, stopped typing on my laptop computer, and asked the Lord to forgive me for what He showed me needed to be purged from my heart. Sadly, the junk in my heart on the particular matter in which He was correcting me had festered there – and built up there – for years! Happily, when I humbled myself before the Lord and sought His forgiveness, He mercifully gave it to me!

The result was a clean heart and a readiness and excitement to go forth in my life, ministry – writing included. Not to go forward according to my own ways, but to go forth living for Jesus!

Is the Lord bringing anything to mind in your own heart and life He wants you to address with repentance? Please don’t look the other way. Please don’t walk the other way. Please humble yourself before the Lord and do as He shows you. For His name’s sake, AMEN!

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