II Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Hebrews 12:11 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.
Proverbs 12:1 Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid.
Correction is simply part of the normal Christian life. Few people like it, partly because few people really understand it. Correction can be painful, and when it is, its benefits can often be clouded by the pain associated with the correction. If we accept the lie of our enemy, we will learn to run from correction because we’ve associated it solely with pain.
But correction is simply getting us back on the right track, moving toward health and wholeness. Yes, there is the implication that we have been wrong when we are corrected. But correction has a purpose. It’s not rebuke, or antagonism, or reaction. Genuine correction assumes that we are heading down the right path, but just need the occasional adjustment to make sure we stay on the right path.
In the book of Acts, Apollos had just appeared on the scene. According to Acts 18, he had been instructed in the way of the Lord, but “when Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately” (v. 26b). This was correction. He knew a lot, but needed to know more.
We need to learn the difference between the Lord’s telling us to stop, rebuking us, chastising us, and correcting us. Some of us are so (wrongly) sensitive to being told we need to make adjustments that we confuse correction with some of these stronger works of God in our lives. It’s true that some of God’s stronger chastisements can cut deeply and hurt, but the only true damage from correction is to our pride.
In fact, pride is usually the only real obstacle to receiving correction (and do a Bible study—correction must be received to be effective). But pride is our enemy, and the results of received correction are beneficial. So correction, while a bit painful to our pride, is really our friend.
Remember the next time God corrects you that the sting of the correction isn’t the point. God’s action is “corrective,” to use another form of the word. It’s simply to help you down the highway of God for your life, and helps prevent you from sliding off to the right or left.
Prayer: Father, thank You for loving us enough to correct us. Help me to learn to receive correction. Right now, I humble myself before You and ask You to correct me whenever I get off the right path. Help me to see correction for the blessing it is.