'Spare the rod and spoil the child'. We might think these words are a quote from the Bible, but what we think is true isn’t always the case. The words of truth in Proverbs 13:24 have gotten slightly misconstrued into something different than they actually say. After checking several versions, none of them said the words that we all think we know. Instead the words in the verse in Proverbs speaks of love. The truth speaks to discipline as a positive influence on those we love. Proverbs 13:24 KJV “He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.” He that loves chastises, isn’t the same as the thing as those words we all quote. Chastising teaches out of a place of correction, not pain. Teaching correction by actually correcting is the truth. Proverbs 13:24 MSG “A refusal to correct is a refusal to love; love your children by disciplining them.” Discipline is achieved in so many loving ways. The words we speak and the actions we take should speak of that love very clearly, because what we say and how we act are our best opportunities in achieving discipline. As our children grow they see us and they imitate our behaviors. Hopefully we are setting an example of love. Love one another like Jesus loves us sets an example of how we should love our children. Loving like Jesus includes things like forgiveness, mercy and grace. These are the true attributes of love. Generosity, kindness and a joyful heart are aspects of love. Love includes things like ‘affection for others, exuberance about life, and serenity. Developing a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely’. You may have recognized these concepts already, but they are right out of the descriptions set down in Galatians 5:22; what we know as the Fruit of the Spirit. When we lovingly discipline our children by displaying the attributes of the Fruit of the Spirit, we are definitely on the right track towards loving them like Jesus.