The Israelites repeatedly ignored God’s discipline (Jer. 2:30). The Lord was grieved that they were unwilling to admit their wrongdoing and change their ways.

I have encountered heartbroken parents with similar feelings about their children. So it was refreshing to hear a young minister at his father’s funeral speak gratefully of his parents’ corrective measures.

He said that when he was a boy, he was picked up by a policeman for throwing stones in a place where he could have caused great damage. The officer told his father that if he disciplined his son it would not be necessary to turn him over to the juvenile authorities. The minister recalled that the look on his father’s face made him wish he could have chosen the juvenile authorities. Yet he knew that his father truly loved him. As he grew up, he continued to need discipline, but because he respected his father and was quick to admit his wrong, he became a responsible adult.

Whether the correction comes from God, a good parent, or some other authority, its effectiveness will be determined by our response. Remember, “He who disdains instruction despises his own soul, but he who heeds rebuke gets understanding” (Prov. 15:32).