Ever hear the term "beaten black and blue"? I wonder if Solomon was the first one to say it.
It's a fact of life that some people learn the hard way. For some, the blows are real -- perhaps discipline from parents to young children who must learn the danger of the situation they've been in, and learn also to avoid it. For some, the blows are figurative --- they are buffeted by the circumstances and situations of life on this earth.
Some kids will not listen; everyone has known a child like that (some intimately). They are obstinate and strong-willed, and it takes sharp correction to make an impression on them. Sometimes the sharp correction is from mom and dad, and other times (if the child is not endangered) mom and dad may step back and allow the consequences to correct their son or daughter. We've said here before that "choices have consequences" and there are times when the consequences are the best teacher.
This isn't only a verse about kids, though. Sometimes as adults we need the rebuke and chastening of our wise Father. As a child of God, I know that this verse speaks just as much about me, as about my own earthly children:
Pro 22:15 Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.My Father's correction may be difficult to bear, but in the end, I will be better off:
Heb 12:11 Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.Now my job is to keep my heart tender, and my prayer life vibrant, so that He can speak to me about things that need to be removed from my heart and my life.
I know that I have been so hurt, and have even shed tears with my children, as they learned a lesson "the hard way" before. I pray that I will not hurt the heart of God in the same way --- I pray that I won't learn the hard way, but will follow His pathway.