Our neighbor’s wisteria below our Alsacian home is at its peak. I can hardly tear my eyes away from it as it is so full. It practically bends the fence with the weight of its blooms. I do not remember it being quite this spectacular other years. But I do remember seeing our neighbor pruning it, and this is the beautiful result.
Not all wisteria vines flower well. There is the story of a lady who after twenty years of fertilizing and pruning finally gave up on her wisteria. She cut off the branches, poured gasoline on the trunk and burned it. The plant started blooming the next spring and every year since!
I could not read that story without thinking of our verse for today. The Lord does discipline and train His children. Our Heavenly Father is perfect and so is His correction. For the believer, judgement and punishment have been taken care of on the cross. But we do need His discipline and it is always done in love. Although it is painful, it is always done for the goal of producing in us the beautiful blossoms of righteousness and peace.
Discipline can last a long time when we do not respond to His correction. Thankfully, He never gives up on us, as did the woman in our story. Of course, not all suffering is discipline. But when repentance is called for, how much better to quickly fall to our knees in humble confession! What hope to know that what follows may be the most productive time of our lives!
Thank you Lord, for producing in me Your peace and righteousness.