I have often said that failure is a great teacher. So is pain. That’s how children learn to respect the hazards in our home. We can tell our children over and over again that a knife is dangerous, but they will continually keep reaching for it at the dinner table until, one day, the sharp blade cuts their little hand. Now, your warning makes sense. They have experienced the sting, the cut, the pain and now they have a reference point and clearly understand the reason for the warning.
Warnings are just words. Once we experience the pain of our choice, the consequences become real and makes a great impression on us. I warned my kids about speeding, but it didn’t get through until my oldest was pulled over by a police officer, cited and was not only required to pay the ticket, but also the increase to our car insurance premium! Ouch!
Maturity for all of us comes when we heed a warning BEFORE we have to experience the pain of a wrong choice. It won’t happen often. We are humans – self-willed, prideful, independent, creative, distracted, etc… That’s why I love God! He doesn’t condemn – He uses the pain of our wrong choices to teach us – to love us. He gently steers us in the right direction. Just like that child with the cut hand from playing with a knife – we are scooped up, cared for, bandaged, spoken tenderly to and kissed on the forehead when we cause our own pain. It doesn’t take away the consequences. We still have to suffer them, but He does not turn away from us or cast us out. He’s a good Father. Failure? He can redeem that!
~ Kristine Morgan,
The Pastor’s Wife