Day 62 – The Discipline of Discipline
Brother Lawrence discusses the discipline of practicing God’s presence: “But when we faithfully keep ourselves in his holy presence, seeing him always before us, not only avoiding offending or displeasing him – at least deliberately – but considering him in this fashion, we take the liberty to ask him for the graces we need. So, by repeating these acts they become more familiar, and the practice of the presence of God becomes more natural.”
When I was in college, I had to balance class assignments, relationships, and other things that were important to me. I led college prayer ministries, was the head resident assistant, served in church ministries, and graduated second in my class. In taking the Taylor Johnson Temperament Analysis, I learned that I rated in the 98 percentile for discipline.
To master any musical instrument takes discipline. To excel in any sport takes discipline. In fact, to do anything well takes discipline.
Proverbs 2, for example, tells us that those who discipline themselves in seeking after wisdom, discernment, understanding, and the knowledge of God will obtain all these treasures.
In mentoring Timothy, Paul wrote, “Train yourself to be godly” (1 Timothy 4:7). Living in Christ and like Christ and with Christ is a matter of training.
We will not wake up one morning to find ourselves suddenly practicing the presence of God. Like Brother Lawrence, we work at it constantly, daily, with effort.
It takes time, energy, repetition, discipline before God – [read slowly] listening, hearing, believing, obeying, following, offering, doing, serving, hoping, hungering, thirsting, pursuing, loving, leaning, trusting.
With discipline we choose to follow Jesus and obey God’s Word – saying no to all that God does not want and saying yes to all that God does want.
With discipline we tackle spiritual lethargy and resist anything that pulls us away from God. With discipline we “press on to know the LORD” (Hosea 6:3) and persevere as a fully devoted follower of Christ.
With discipline we train ourselves to live in God’s presence continually until it becomes as natural as breathing.
Training for godliness is for the marathon not a sprint.
Question: In training yourself to be godly, what do you need to start doing?
This is God’s Word for you today,