Take a look at the little girl in the picture above. Sometimes that’s what the Lord sees when He disciplines me–my back as I’m running away with my hand flung up in defiance. I don’t want to hold a hand; I’m a big girl.

A Devotional Meditation on Proverbs 3:11-12

Do not despise the Lord’s instruction, my son,

And do not loathe his discipline;

For the Lord disciplines the one he loves,

Just as a father disciplines the son in whom he delights.


Proverbs 3:11-12 (CSB)

My Thoughts

I really don’t like admitting I need discipline from the Lord. And what a ridiculous thing to say! Without instruction, I can’t grow. Without loving rebuke, I can’t become the woman God wants me to be.

Without instruction, I can’t grow. Without loving rebuke, I can’t become the woman God wants me to be. Click To Tweet

I know better; I’ve been on the other side of things. I give my kids boundaries and rules to help them grow into fully mature adults, because I love them. When they were toddlers, they pouted and cried about the rules. As they’ve grown, they better understand what I’m trying to do for them and (usually) don’t balk as much.

So when the Lord needs to correct me, what do I do? When He needs to make me aware of boundaries I’m pushing, how do I react? Like a toddler upset that there are rules at all, or like a mature adult who thanks the Lord for loving me as much as He does?

My Struggles

I’ve got to be honest . . . it depends on the day and what I’m being corrected about.

I personally need this verse this week to help me submit to the Lord’s direction and correction. I think of myself as pretty submissive to the Lord’s plans, and then He shows me certain areas that I’m not. I’m thankful for the Spirit that searches my heart and helps me grow, but sometimes the growing process is very uncomfortable. I need an attitude adjustment.

Suggested Meditation

Below is a look at my dialogue with the Holy Spirit while meditating on this passage. I meditate on the same verse every day for at least a week, and this is just a model to get you started. Meditating on scripture is a very personal journey and relationship with God, but you may find my Meditation Guide helpful. Subscribe now to my Newsletter and get immediate access to a Free Printable Library that includes meditation guidelines, a Meditation Journal Page, Scripture Writing pages, and bookmarks for this verse.

“Do not despise the Lord’s instruction, my son, And do not loathe his discipline”:

I need to stop and do an attitude check. Spirit, search me: Is my heart resentful? Am I still fighting and arguing with God over something? Am I trying to ignore, justify, or defend a behavior or attitude? Whatever it is I’m struggling with in life — it’s a spiritual struggle, not a fleshly one. It’s where God is meeting me in my rebellion and trying to help me grow. Am I angry about it? Playing the victim? Pouting?

I spend a lot of time in quiet reflection asking the Lord to show me, heal me, and help me. I am silent before my Father allowing Him to speak.

“For the Lord disciplines the one he loves”:

Does my heart feel loved? Or am I too busy sulking or being angry? Lord, help me see your love in this moment. Let me see this struggle from your point of view. Help me understand and rest in your knowledge. Increase my faith to trust in your ways.

“Just as a father disciplines the son in whom he delights”:

I am so loved. As I’m convicted, I don’t feel worthy of your delight. But your correction is proof. I think of my love for my children and reflect on you loving me the same way. You make things uncomfortable out of love. Thank you, Lord for loving me so much. Change my attitude toward this discipline, and show me the way forward so that I don’t need it again.

Suggested Breath Prayers

For more info on Breath Prayers, visit the article You’re Just a Breath Away From God.

Do not despise instruction

Submit to discipline

Fathers/Mothers discipline with love

He delights in me

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Little girl running away from discipline symbolizing our resistance to God.