I never realised I’ve lived a sheltered life…

…until now.

I have life experience. I don’t mean that as the polite way of saying ‘I’m old’ but I always would have said I’ve experienced a lot of things – not much shocks me, not much is abnormal. I spent enough years of my life living outside of the ‘Christian experience’ so I’ve seen and done a lot of things.

But the last week has been full of new things. Things that have shocked me, that have felt so far outside of normal I can barely comprehend them. Not in my life, but in the lives of those close to me. So as I find myself speechless and feeling completely useless, I start the search for some kind of answer or perhaps even comfort.

And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as children? It says, “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his child.” Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined – and everyone undergoes discipline – then you are not legitimate children at all. Moreover; we have all had parents who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the father of the spirits and live! Our parents disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. Hebrews 12:5-12