Customarily people don’t enjoy being told they did something incorrectly. Common reactions include denying the mistake, pointing out that others do the same thing, or failing to listen at all. Why is it so difficult to be corrected?
Correction should be something we seek in order to be more competent at the tasks we are called to accomplish. Only a prideful person assumes that he will perform excellently all the time. Most worthwhile activities require training and practice. Without correction, we could make the same error over and over.
How can we teach our children not only to receive correction with a good attitude, but to appreciate correction when it comes? First, we must model the behaviors we are attempting to instill. Second, we need to establish from the outset that everyone needs to have feedback when it comes to things like chores, academic performance, and character issues. Third, we need to pay close attention to how we correct. If we equate correction with “being in trouble,” those under our authority will learn to dread any instance of being told, “That’s not right.” Finally, we need to acknowledge improvement when it happens. Without this, our discipline only amounts to delivering bad news all the time.
Establishing a pattern of daily Bible reading (both individually and as a family) will provide a regular dose of correction from the Lord. The Scriptures are basically God’s directives and correctives, and we should approach this interaction with God with an expectation of being corrected. That is what sanctification amounts to: discovering how we can serve the Kingdom of God by acting in a just and righteous manner, and repenting of our transgressions when we are made aware of them. Without a working knowledge of the law-word of God, we hamstring ourselves when it comes to living out our callings.
Those who relish the chance to serve the Lord better, will seek out friends and mentors who are not afraid to offer correction. What’s more, when we are set upon improving our work for the Lord, we can count on receiving His blessing rather than incite His wrath.
Correct me, O LORD, but in justice; not in your anger, lest you bring me to nothing. (Jeremiah 10:24).