Discipline comes from a Latin word “disco” which means to learn or get to know, a direct kind of acquaintance with something or someone.
Discipline refers to the process by which one learns a way of life. A disciple is like an apprentice who is learning a trade or craft from a master. Such learning required a relationship between the master who knew the way of life (discipline) and a learner (a disciple). Within this relationship, the master led a learner through a process (the discipline) until the learner could imitate or live like the master.
As a young child, discipline always had negative connotations for me. It was intimately associated with punishment and correction, all things that I convinced myself were inherently evil and bad. I only wanted praise and affirmation, but I didn’t want to be scolded when I did wrong.
Growing up with a strict Father who did not spare the rod taught me the importance of good conduct, godly routines and also the negative repercussions of disobedience. When I became a believer, God used these concepts instilled in me and extended them into my spiritual life, whilst also deepening the way I practiced them in my physical life.
Now let us be sure of one thing, discipline is not just a moral outward show of good works, it is a sign of a circumcised and consecrated heart which overflows into all areas of our life. Another thing often missed about the practice of discipline is how closely linked it is to self-control, the fruit of the Holy Spirit.
- It is the ability to do what you must even when you don’t feel like it.
- It is the habit of walking in the spirit and denying the flesh.
- It is the pursuit of long-term pleasure rather than instant gratification.
- It is the fruit of a fruitful relationship with God our Father.
Let us all remember something really important: we are in a fight daily against our own flesh and also against our adversary the Devil. We must be focussed, we must train and we must prepare so that we can win and walk in the victory that Christ bought for us with his precious blood!
As a believing woman, there are many areas of my life that God has called me to discipline in, however the area that the Lord desires to cultivate discipline in my life the MOST is in spiritual things. In this series we will cover 5 of the core spiritual disciplines I believe should characterise the life of a godly woman, and why they’re vital for spiritual growth and effectiveness in both the world and the church.
- The Discipline of Studying Scripture
- The Discipline of Prayer and Fasting
- The Discipline of Worship
- The Discipline of Fellowship
- The Discipline of Service
And finally a word of encouragement – discipline from the Lord is a demonstration of how much God LOVES you as his precious daughter. So though it will be painful, it is for your own good.
Proverbs 3:11-12 My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline, and do not resent his rebuke, because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.
I am super excited to get started with this new series and hope you will join! What is one area of your life that God is disciplining you about right now? Let me know in the comments.