To Set Straight, Refute Error, Share Truth

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How will you respond when your spouse lovingly brings you rebuke?

My son, do not despise the Lord's discipline and do not resent his rebuke. Proverbs 3:11

Truth must be shared and embraced if it is to "set us free." Many times the very truth that I (David) need to hear seems unpleasant. That's often an indication that my sin or weakness has been exposed. I may have to hear painful truth as God's hand works to grow me and bring maturity. That's what a rebuke looks like.

God is committed to the truth and will employ any "instrument" to deliver that truth. Truth came to Balaam from a donkey. Jonah found truth in a giant fish. God gave Peter a dream of "unclean animals" to bring truth. And the Prodigal Son realized truth in a pigpen.

God's rebuke has come to me through disap­pointment and defeat, through blocked goals and bounced checks, through declining health and sleepless nights. And, yes, it has often come through the loving but firm words of a caring wife.

For me, rebuke has often meant Teresa gently pointing out, for example, that my busy schedule was keeping me from prioritizing our family. She lov­ingly pointed out that to "give myself up for her," as Ephesians 5 tells me to do, I must be willing to give up my schedule and agenda just to be with her and the kids.

Rebuke has meant that Teresa helped me see that my motives were good when I made the kids destroy their secular music, but that the method provoked them to wrath. My heart was in the right place, but the way I handled the situation damaged the relationship.

Time and again, the Lord has used Teresa to help me see the truth of His Word and to help me recognize my own blind spots.

How will you respond when your spouse lovingly brings you rebuke?

Father, thank You for loving me enough to share the truth with me—even when it hurts.

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