We are disciplined by the Father because He loves us (Heb. 12:6). No one, that I know of, enjoyed or enjoys parental correction. Yet, we know that the correction, in the wisdom of hindsight, is for our good.
There have been many, many times over the years that I’ve gone to sulk in the inner chambers of my heart when things were not going as hoped, expected, or even fairly, whatever that means. I’d take my Bible and search for a promissory verse to point to, and say, “This is what You promised, not this out there.” Hey, at least I’m honest.
At some point, body and soul got tired of adversity, tired of affliction, and I wondered if I was even walking in the way of the Lord. Hey, yes, transparent.
Then words of a verse began to come to mind, bits and pieces; but I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. Slowly I put it together, to the best of my recollection. Then opening the Word, I found it, and read it.
“And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore, but your eyes shall see your teachers. Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” Whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left” (Isa. 30:20-21).
Ouch, “the Lord gives.”
What is it that He gives? לֶחֶם צָר/lechem tzar/ bread of adversity, or, the bread of the narrowing way. And, וּמַיִם לָחַץ/u’mayim lakhats, and the water of affliction/pressure.
“The Lord gives.” These three words changed my mind. The trial was the bread/food of narrowing, along the narrow way. While the water, the pressure that narrows.
When we come to faithful terms with that realization, our teachers will not be hidden from us, as we will see how the Lord is using circumstance to change us, and draw us, again, to Himself.
Rather than the voice of the enemy saying, “You are not favored by God,” the voice of the ministering angels say, “No, this is the way through the valley, keep walking.” Right. Left. He will work it all together for our good, because He loves us, and has called us; and He is conforming us to the image of Yeshua/Jesus (Ro. 8:28-29).
The bread of adversity does not taste good; and the waters of affliction do not satisfy. Yet, they are given by the Lord, and are therefore good, in order to lead us deeper into Himself, out of reliance upon the world, to a position of faithing where the impossible happens (Matt. 19:26).
At His feet, the bread is the hidden manna given by Yeshua (Rev. 2:17), and the water, well, that flows from beneath His throne (Rev. 22:1). Amen.
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it (Matt. 7:13-14).
Be well. Shalom.