We’ve all been there, sitting in a bus, a train, or walking around the supermarket when we’ve heard the desperate cry of an infant, “I want it now!”

At times the person looking after them takes no notice, other times the person gives into their request. Now I know if that was me at that age I would be getting the reply of “NO!” followed by a swift but firm smack. Whether old or young it’s important to hear that “no”. It’s important to receive tough love. You may be thinking what’s tough love and why is it needed? Tough love is an expression that is generally thought of as a disciplinary measure where someone is treated sternly, with the intention of helping him or her in the long run.

Tough love isn’t done in pride but with a controlled and loving heart.

I love the way it’s expressed in Proverbs 13:24″He who spares his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him promptly.” Tough love is important in disciplining us. 1 Corinthians 9:27 (English Standard Version) says “But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.” Another reason why tough is important is due to the constant battle we face daily. Galatians 5:17 (New International Version) says “For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.” Constantly the enemy is trying to tempt us so that we give in to our sinful nature. Tough love sets down boundaries. It may not be to our liking but it essential for God to turn us into the man or woman he wants us to be.

Tough love isn’t nice but it’s essential for growth, grounded in discipline it allows us to flourish.

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