Do you know when God is disciplining you?
This is perhaps one of the hardest aspects of God's character to understand. God is surely a God of grace, but when we reject his gracious ways with us, He then has no option but to discipline us. After many warnings for the people to turn away from their sins, God finally says to the people,
"I will turn my eyes away and show no pity. I will repay you for all your detestable sins. Then you will know that it is I, the Lord, who is striking the blow (The Lord Who Smites)." Ezekiel 7:9
The big misunderstanding here is when people think that God's punishment is just to get back at us for our sin (revenge). Ultimately, Jehovah Makkeh is all about grace. God created us to know Him, walk with Him, delight in Him... and He knows that unless we turn from the sin that separates us from Him, we will not experience true life in its fullest.
He disciplines so that we have a chance to receive healing. He disciplines so that our pride doesn't destroy us. He disciplines so that our addiction doesn't overcome us. He disciplines so that we will stay on the path of LIFE.
We see this side of God's character when Saul is hit by the presence of God, falls off his horse, and becomes temporarily blind. It was the only way to get his attention. We later see Paul warning the church against participating in the Lord's supper without reverence for it's meaning. He even says, "that's why so many of you are weak and sick and some have even died" (1 Cor. 11:30).
Maybe some of the bad or unexpected things happening in our lives are God's way of getting our attention. Maybe he's trying to say something... or guide us the right direction... or show us a better way. Sometimes the only way we'll turn to Him wholeheartedly, is when He disciplines us with the consequence of our wicked choices. Then we see our need for Him. Then we recognize how much our sin has stolen our fulfillment. That's His way of molding us.
Whether it's the pain of a relationship, the lack of peace in your heart, or a sickness of some sort... maybe God is trying to get your attention in order to bring you into a life of abundant joy and fruitfulness.
"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." Hebrews 12:11
Other Scriptures with Jehovah Makkeh: Lamentations 3:30, Zechariah 13:7, Malachi 4:6