Joshua and I got into a fight the other day and I was so upset with him. I honestly can’t remember the details of what he did but I remember being LIVID. I also remember putting him in his naughty corner until he apologised. The apology NEVER came. His Dad told him to say Sorry and he gave him a completely blank stare. He chose his naughty corner over saying sorry and on some level my heart broke.
Eventually it was dinner time and when he got hungry he had the cheek to tell me “Yum Yum”. To be honest I considered the option of letting him starve (I KID I KID) but the mother in me could not even breathe at the thought so I gave him dinner. And after dinner it was bath time. At this point, the incident was a past issue as we had fun through out dinner and after.
As I put him in his tub and we started to bath, we were singing and dancing when my baby stopped, looked at me and said the words: “SORRY” and my heart BURST with joy. I didn’t even realise how much I needed to hear those words but apparently I did.
What then occurred to me is how we are with our Father and Creator. I realised that even though Joshua had been very naughty and I was disappointed, it did not stop me from loving him. I did discipline him but even in the midst of that I was still thinking about his needs. I was still consumed with making sure he ate and took a bath. Whether he apologised or not did not stop me from loving him and being his mother.
A lot of us are stuck with the thought that God holds back from blessing us because we did something wrong. When we get in trouble, we don’t want to run to God because we remember we messed up and expect that he’s pretty pissed off so he won’t help us. We even secretly think God is the one behind our misfortune and that makes us run even further from him. Even after we confess and ask for forgiveness profusely a part of us think God is still putting us in the naughty corner.
I had the same fears and concerns. I never used to want to ask God for anything because in my mind I didn’t deserve it. I mean after two abortions, I felt I was not worth God’s love and forgiveness. Even when I knew he had forgiven me, I still was scared of future punishment and every time I made mistakes, I was sure that God would punish me in one way or the other. So if I had financial problems I immediately remembered I didn’t give a beggar money and so of course God was punishing me for being stingy. Forget that I gave that same beggar money 3 days before and I only didn’t give because I didn’t have cash. In my mind, God was justified in holding back certain blessings because I had not been an exemplary human being. I was just sure that God would leave me in the naughty corner forever.
What I didn’t realise is that nothing can truly separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:31-39) which is why Paul prayed that “may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is.” (Ephesians 3:18 NLT version). The truth is that there is barely anything my son can do that will make me stop loving him. It does not mean that I won’t correct him or discipline him but love would ALWAYS be my motivation so even as I discipline him, I would make sure he eats and he is taken care of. AND I AM ONLY HUMAN.
How much more our heavenly father who loved us so much that he gave his only beloved son for our sake.
God is not the one behind that shame and condemnation that is holding you back from enjoying the blessings he has given so freely to us. He also is not the one punishing you and the reason why things aren’t so great (That is the job of the Devil). He won’t give his son for you and then hold back every other thing from you (Romans 8:32). It is not possible.
Does this mean we should take that love for granted and do whatever we please? NO WAY! But when we do miss our way and do what we want instead of going his way, then we should understand that his discipline is NOT his condemnation and he still loves us beyond our imagination. He still will bless us and give us more than we need because he is our Father and loves us too much to watch us suffer. The only time he sat back and watched his child suffer was when Christ was crucified and he allowed that for your sake and once that was done, it meant we won’t ever have to experience that again.
So please free yourself from the naughty corner, God released you from it and he wants to take care of you and love you as his own. Don’t stay in the corner longer than you ought to.
Enjoy God’s love.