Some people have a hard time even thinking of God as “Father” because of the horrible abuse they suffered from their earthly fathers’ hands. But God is a Father who never abuses His children, although He does punish them. He chastens those whom He loves. It is wise for the child of God to fear the corrective wrath of the Father.
I loved my earthly father deeply. In fact, I idolized him. I was secure in his love, as he was constant in showing affection for me. I feared him in the sense that I didn’t want to disappoint him or let him down. I had the “fear” of respect for him. But I also feared his wrath and discipline. Even though, in general, I didn’t want to disappoint him or grieve him, nevertheless I often disobeyed him. That meant facing his discipline.
When my father disciplined me he always announced it to me by saying, “Son, we have to have a session.” That meant I had to follow him into his office, close the door behind me, and sit in a chair in front of him. He wouldn’t raise his voice. He would calmly tell me what I did wrong and why it was wrong. He instructed me in such a way that I was devastated. He always ended the session with a warm embrace. But talk about the conviction of sin … whew!