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Love and discipline are often described as archrivals. In reality, they are best friends. When both abide in the same house, they make champions out of our children. The author of Hebrews explained to early Christians, “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, Nor faint when you are reproved by Him; For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines, And He scourges every son whom He receives” (Hebrews 12:5, 6 NASB).
The verses preceding that exhortation speak of a race in which God longs for His children to run as champions. The book of Hebrews compares the Christian life to an endurance race in which we experience tribulations. Those difficulties are God’s way of bringing discipline into our everyday experience. And every great athlete understands that it takes discipline to be a champion.
These verses contain some great truths about discipline. Most people think of discipline as a negative characteristic. Many think that it’s punishment for something done wrong. However, discipline is the positive work of God in our lives to make us more like Jesus, and love must be the cornerstone for all discipline.
When I was in high school, a great track coach worked with us. Coach “Boots” Garland trained us, and our junior varsity team went from being mediocre to winning the district championship. The difference before Coach Garland and after his work with us rested in his training. He applied a great amount of discipline to his method of coaching.
If you wanted to run for him, then you practiced by his rules. He didn’t make us train his way because he was on an ego trip. He knew what it took to make us champions. He did it because he cared about us and wanted us to be winners.
We must learn to apply those truths to our family relationships. Rules must be established in every home, and we must help our children to understand and live by them. When rules are violated, we don’t revert to abusive speech and discipline, but apply discipline in a spirit of love.
My wife and I struggled with this concept for a long time. She was great in displaying love for our children when they failed, and I was strong at applying discipline. However, it was when we began to understand that our children needed both of what we had to offer that we saw them take the greatest strides in their growth.
By applying both love and discipline, we agreed that we would discuss and pray with them about their failure to keep our rules. That wasn’t always easy, but it was invariably the right thing to do. The goal of our discipline wasn’t punishment, but rather a change in behavior.
Discipline in anger will only enrage and repel our children. However, love without discipline will unleash a host of habits that have the potential to destroy them. Both discipline without love and love without discipline will produce negative results. Yet, when we apply both love and discipline, it unleashes the possibility of seeing our children develop into true champions in life.
When we look to God and see him as our Father, we see how He works within us through a kind of discipline, which is rooted in love. He uses this loving discipline to conform us into the image of His Son, Jesus. It’s the secret to raising champions for Christ.

Proverbs : Chapter 15
28)  The heart of the righteous weighs its answers, but the mouth of the wicked gushes evil. 29)  The Lord is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayer of the righteous. 30)  Light in a messenger’s eyes brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones. 31)  Whoever heeds life-giving correction will be at home among the wise. 32)  Those who disregard discipline despise themselves, but the one who heeds correction gains understanding. 33)  Wisdom’s instruction is to fear the Lord, and humility comes before honor.

Book of the Month

Sammy Tippit told his fiancée, “I can’t promise we’ll be rich, but life won’t be boring.”
Sammy had no idea what an understatement that would become. Beginning in the bars of Baton Rouge and the nightclubs of Chicago, Tippit has shared the news of life-changing faith in Christ all over the world – including in the middle of a revolution in Romania, the aftermath of genocide in Rwanda, and war in Burundi and the Congo.
Sammy’s lifelong adventure has come at a great price. He’s been cursed, threatened, arrested, deported, and blacklisted. He’s also been personally broken, ravaged with illness, and devastated by grief.
Yet he continues to preach to in stadiums, in open fields, and via satellite technology to hundreds of thousands around the globe.  For all other books…

About Sammy Tippit Ministries

STM has been providing inspiration and help around the world for nearly 50 years. Sammy Tippit, founder and president, is a world renowned counselor, teacher and evangelist with experience serving and helping people in over 80 countries. Sammy provides materials that help people tackle a broad array of social, societal, psychological and spiritual issues. He is particularly passionate about making materials accessible to other countries around the world. Sammy is married to Debara “Tex” Tippit, and they have two children and five grandchildren.
Sammy Tippit Ministries is a registered 501c3 non-profit organization.
Contact: info@sammytippit.org

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