No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
When parents correct their children they don’t do so because they enjoy disciplining them. Instead it is in order to stop or prevent bad behavior. Sometimes it is even for a child’s physical safety such as keeping them from touching a hot stove or playing in traffic.
When God disciplines us, it is for the same reasons. God wants us to grow healthy and strong. This can only be done by preventing bad behavior in us and keeping us out of harm’s way.
When plants are growing, they are often in need of pruning. Sometimes it is because branches grow that do not conform with the desired shape of a plant.
Other times there are branches that grow that steal away important nutrients from the plant. When these branches are removed, more energy can be focused on growing fruit. Growing fruit is the main purpose of a plant.
As Christians, our main goal is to grow fruit as well. This means that we need to have branches removed from us that do not conform to what God wants from us. It also means removing things that steal away our energy from growing fruit.
Pruning, just like discipline, can be a painful process. But it is a necessary process in order to be as productive as we can and to bear as much fruit as possible.