Love in Chastisement
"As many as I love — I rebuke and chasten." (Revelation 3:19)
Sorrowing Believer! what could you wish more than this? Your furnace is severe; but look at this assurance of Him who lit it. Love is the fuel that feeds its flames! Its every spark is love! It is kindled by your heavenly Father's hand — and designed as a pledge of His special love. How many of His dear children has He so rebuked and chastened; and all, all for one reason, "I love them!" The myriads in glory have passed through these furnace-fires — there they were chosen — there they were purified, sanctified, and made "vessels fit for the Master's use;" the dross and the alloy purged — that the pure metal might remain.
And are you to claim exemption from the same discipline? Are you to think it strange concerning these same fiery trials that may be purifying you? Rather exult in them — as your adoption privilege. Do not envy those who are strangers to the refining flames — who are "without chastisement."
You should surely rather have the severest discipline — with a Father's love; than the fullest earthly cup — without that Father's smile. Oh! for grace to say, when the furnace is hottest, and the rod sorest, "Yes, Father, for this was Your good pleasure!" And what, after all, is the severest of your chastisements, in comparison with what your sins have deserved? Do you murmur under a Father's correcting love? What would it have been to have stood the wrath of an un-propitiated Judge, and that, too, forever? Surely, in the light of eternity, the heaviest pang of earth — is indeed "a light affliction!"