Discipline -- By Annettee Budzban

"No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace." — Hebrews 12:11 (NIV)

As a natural childbirth instructor, each week I had the pleasure to view the faithfulness of the couples as they came for their next lesson. To fulfill their dream, it would take discipline. They sat through many hours of instruction and practice sessions; then they would continue to carry on these same exercises on their own, to ensure their success.

One day, when I was working on the Obstetrical Unit, one of my students arrived. She was not assigned as my patient, but her attending nurse mentioned that she asked if I could stop for a moment to see her.

I found a break to stop by briefly. As I approached her bedside she calmly said to me, "I can't stand one more minute of this pain, please ask them to give me something for it."

I assured her that I would speak with her nurse right away and she would take care of it. 

My initial thought was, She has just arrived and is unable to cope with the pain, how will she make it through the rest of her labor?

I was soon informed that she was ready to deliver. I was humbled at this news thinking. No wonder she couldn't stand the pain any more, she was about to give birth. 

I never detected it in her peaceful tone. She was so disciplined.

Discipline — I don't like it. I have never even been good at it. But I like the results it produces. Beautiful music comes only after many hours of disciplined practice; so does writing, sports, and the many other things that we do, and enjoy. Discipline is God's way of making us our best. He shows us the rewards that come from it. With it we can improve our prayer life, health, stamina, behavior etc. There is no area in our life that can be changed without it.

Scripture tells us that discipline develops a special quality in us known as "righteousness and peace."  You might keep that as your focus, the next time you struggle with being disciplined.

Annettee Budzban