Love seeks to bring the justice of heaven to every injustice on earth. It fights for the restoration of the victim and the redemption of the victimizer.
If an elder or private member of the church finds his brethren cold towards him, there is but one way to remedy it. It is by being revived himself, and pouring out from his eyes and from his life the splendor of the image of Christ. This spirit will catch and spread in the church, and confidence will be renewed, and brotherly love prevail again.
Jesus learned obedience through what he suffered. He was pressed and the virtue that he carried was pressed out of him. He suffered the stripes, and still carries the scars, for our healing. Jesus ended the cycle of pain by ending it within himself. He doesn’t perpetuate that pain by hurting others. When we suffer with virtue, we allow our pain to become a place of trust in God, which ultimately leads to healing. When we don’t face our own pain, we can’t heal the world.
Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again” to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.
Thou knowest how far Thou hast already changed me, who first healed me of the lust of vindicating myself, that so Thou mightest forgive all the rest of my iniquities, and heal all my infirmities, and redeem my life from corruption, and crown me with mercy and pity, and satisfy my desire with good things; who didst curb my pride with Thy fear, and tame my neck to Thy yoke. And now I bear it and it is light unto me, because so hast Thou promised, and hast made it; and verily it was so, and I knew it not, when I feared to take it.
The goal of God’s discipline is restoration – never condemnation.