For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives. Hebrews 12:7 ESV
Maybe the phrase, “This is going to hurt me more than it’s going to hurt you!” is imprinted indelibly in my memory, because it always preceded several well aimed smacks on my behind. It was not that I questioned the truth my step-father’s intentions, it was simply the fact that I never listened to any of the words that came after, and “This is going to hurt!” So when I first came to this passage in Hebrews my mind slipped back in time to those moments of discipline and I inwardly cringed as I waited for God’s punishment to fall.
But, as true as the fact that we need to be disciplined by our heavenly Father, is the reality that it really did hurt God far more than it hurts us. After all, God is correcting us for things we have done wrong but Jesus went as an innocent lamb to the cross to pay for our adoption into His family. Like Thomas we worry that we have been left out of blessings that we think we deserve. But the good news is that Jesus came even for a doubtful Thomas and as showed him the marks of the nails in his hands and the scar from the spear in His side. It’s as if He looked lovingly into Thomas’ fearful eyes and said, “Stop your doubting and just believe. This really did hurt me more than it hurt you, but it was worth it because I want you to be my son!”