(by John McDuff, edited)

"For the Lord disciplines those He loves." Heb. 12:6

What! God loves me when He is discharging His
quiver upon me, emptying me from vessel to vessel,
causing the sun of my earthly joys to set in clouds?

Yes! O afflicted one, tossed with tempest;
He chastens you because He loves you!

This trial comes from His own tender, loving
hand; from His own tender, unchanging heart!

Are you laid on a sickbed; are sorrowful months and
wearisome nights appointed unto you? Let this be
the pillow on which your aching head reclines: It is
because He loves me!

Is it bereavement that has crushed your heart and
desolated your dwelling? He appointed that chamber
of death, because He loves you!

As it is the suffering child of the family which claims
a mother's deepest affections and most tender
solicitude; so have you at this moment allured to
your side the most tender love and solicitude of
your heavenly Father.

He loved you into this sorrow, and will love you through it!

There is nothing capricious in His dealings.

LOVE is the reason of all He does. There is no drop
of wrath in that bitter cup you are called to drink.

Believer! rejoice in the thought that the
rod, the chastening rod, is in the hands of
the living, loving Savior, who died for you!

Tribulation is the King's Highway and
yet that highway is paved with love.

As some flowers before shedding their fragrance
require to be crushed, so does your God think it
suitable to bruise you.

As some birds are said to sing their sweetest notes
when the thorn pierces their bosom, so does He
appoint affliction to lacerate, that you may be driven
to the wing, singing, in your upward soaring, "My
heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed!"

Be it ours to say, "Lord, I will love You not only
despite Your rod, but because of your rod. I will
rush into the very arms that are chastening me!"