We who preach and write, do so in a manner different from which the Scriptures have been written. We write while we make progress. We learn something new every day. We speak as we still knock for understanding...If anyone criticizes me when I have said what is right, he does me an injustice. But I would be more angry with the one who praises me and takes what I have written for Gospel truth than I would be with the one who criticizes me unfairly. -Augustine

Discipline–The Price of Freedom

Two years ago I shared the following statement with my staff that was penned by author Elton Trueblood. “Acceptance of discipline is the price of freedom.” Yesterday, one of our staff said that it was that statement that motivated her to lose thirty pounds this past year. And you should see her! She has an air of confidence, has more energy, and is a key member of our Lamplighter staff.

You see, the pole vaulter is not free to experience the thrill of victory except as he disciplines himself rigorously day after day. Trueblood writes, “The freedom of the surgeon to use his knife or laser to cut away the bony structure, close to a tiny nerve without severing it, arises from discipline. I have shared this before, but the 8 weeks of intense discipline and training for my pilot’s license has given me the freedom to care for my mom though I live in another state . . . and to enjoy her chicken cutlets!

John Milton wrote, “There is not that thing in the world of more grave and urgent importance, throughout the whole of life of man, than is discipline.” Jesus said “the meek shall inherit the earth.” What does that have to do with discipline? The word meek in the Greek is praos, which is a word used for wild animals which had been trained and tamed to be able to work with men. Not weak or spiritless, but rather a channeled energy whose impulses have been directed into a focused service.

Discipline is the price of freedom . . . and there are no short cuts. It starts with a decision followed by a commitment of sacrifice and perseverance.

Published in: on March 28, 2011 at 1:00 pm  Leave a Comment  

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