Thursday, November 1, 2007

My Grandfather's Belt

No, the title was not a misspelling, I did not intend to say my grandfather's mantle. I said what I meant, today I will write about my grandfather's belt. I remember the belt well. When I had an intimate encounter with said belt it was already worn, the black leather not quite so shiny anymore due to the passage of time, and although he could have bought a new one, my grandfather continued to wear that old belt because it had sentimental value. It had been given to him many years ago by his brother Cornel who was a tailor, and it was the only belt he owned for the rest of his life.
I was eight years old, a big boy now, already in the second grade, when I had my one and only encounter with my grandfather's belt. After much begging and pleading my parents finally gave in to the idea of me walking to and from school by myself, only if I promised to come home right after school, every single day. It had gotten embarrassing, being the only child whose mother walked him up the hill to the school house, holding his had every morning, and then waiting for him in front of the building every afternoon when school let out.
The first few months went off without a hitch, I enjoyed my new found independence of walking to school by myself carrying my bag of books and notebooks, and as I'd promised coming home right after, without so much as a detour through the park.
That all changed on the day that my cousin Benny, who was about my age told me his dad had just gotten a television, and if I would come by right after school both Tom and Jerry, and Charlie Chaplin would be on. In order to understand what that meant to an eight year old in an eastern block country, I need to explain some things.
First, we did not have a television in our home. My uncle Cornel got saved only after we were deported from Romania, so he was a bit more liberal in what he allowed his children to do. Second, there weren't five hundred channels of streaming foolishness on television back then, there was one channel, and eighteen hours out of a twenty four hour day they aired speeches given by Ceausescu, the communist dictator, and his most trusted advisers, praising the virtues of communism. So Tom and Jerry cartoons, and Charlie Chaplin back to back was a big deal.
To say the least, in my young adolescent mind, I was conflicted. I knew the promise I had made to my parents, but then again, they were my parents, they wouldn't do anything if I got home a couple hours late.
I finally gave in to the temptation, and went to my uncle's house, sat through thirty minutes of a cartoon cat trying to catch a cartoon mouse, then thirty more minutes of a man tripping over himself, walking into doors, yet never getting hurt.
My aunt gave us cookies, and mineral water with honey, and as I walked out into the mid afternoon sun, I felt an odd mixture of guilt and glee. Yes, I'd broken my promise, I thought to myself, but my parents will understand.
As I turned the corner and headed down the hill that would take me home, I saw my grandfather pedaling his bicycle up the hill. He looked worried and concerned. If anyone had to come looking for me, I would have preferred my grandfather. He had never disciplined me, unlike my mother or grandmother, and I knew he loved me, so it was okay.
As he saw me coming down the hill, he stopped his bicycle and got off, then waited for me to reach him. He then leaned his bicycle against a tree, took off his belt and said, 'turn around.'
I was stunned. I would have expected something like this from my mother, or my grandmother, but not him. He was grandpa, he took me fishing, he let me ride his bicycle around the yard, he'd never discipline me!
But discipline me he did. It was the first and only time my grandfather spanked me, and it was not because my mother was worried as to where I was, since we lived in a village where everyone knew everyone else, but because I had broken my promise, because I had not kept my word.
Some people go about life believing that God is too good, too loving, to discipline or chasten His children. They go back on the promises they made to keep themselves pure from the world, to strive for righteousness, thinking that there are no consequences to their actions.
For some, the first time God chastens them is so shocking, surreal, and revealing, that one chastening is all it takes for the rest of their lives. They learn that even though God loves them, He will not spare them chastening when it is deserved. In fact it is because God loves them that He chooses to discipline, rather than allow them to pursue the desires of their hearts.
To this day I remember my grandfather's belt, not because he used it every other day, but because he used it once, and it was contradictory to his nature. God finds no pleasure in chastening us, but as a good Father, from time to time He must, that we remain on the narrow path of faith.
1 Corinthians 12:7-8, "If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? Bu if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons."

With love in Christ,

Michael Boldea Jr.


A Seed Sower said...

Beautiful Bro Michael, no doubt that your grandpa surely did love you my dear.
The great thing about God is that he chastizes us for our certain good. He knows what we do, have done, and will do. He knows the very thoughts and intents of our hearts.
Unlike we parents with more than one child, when they do something and all deny it, and we punish them all because we don't know for sure who dunit...God knows who dunit...and He is punishing that we may come up higher and be fit for the Kingdom of God, and not be a castaway.

Anonymous said...

Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.
It's a good thing your grandfather didn't let it slide.
We might not be hearing from you today ?
I think by our nature we are only too willing to let things go without dealing with them before they become the large monsters in our lives.
Feigned love never hold's anyone accountable for anything.
Much like our government today.
It's the little foxes which spoil the vine.
I believe the Lord has given us time to repent since 9/11 and has given us a lull in between war's, before the big war with Iran,Russia and China.
I don't have any doubt that they will not sit back as they did when we went after Afghanistan and Iraq.
This one will set the red horse in motion.

It will not go as easily as the experts have planned with percision bombing and back to base with an overconfident air of superiority.

In all my years in the Air Force as a Creww Chief launching jets ,there was only one piolot ,one time who did not want me to go thru the safety checks as he was showing off to the new weapons safety officer in the back seat of the F-4D.

They both died shortly thereafter flying the jet upside down at mach speed engraving it into a hill on one of the bombing ranges at Holloman Air Force Base.

Thats when the Lord taught me for life that overconfidence kills.
And this is what I see with our cocky leaders who lead us to destruction.You can't tell them anything ,their mind is made up just like Capt. Proctor's mind was made up that day.

How is it that some of us can see and that our experts and leaders are so blind.
It has to be because God has blinded their pride filled eyes ?
Or it could be nobody used the belt on them when it could of had a good influence on their judgment today ?

A big unexpected surpirise is in store for the nation which assumes to divide Jerusalem & Israel.
Cut in pieces Zechariah 12:3

"Oh, how Esau shall be searched out!
How his hidden treasures shall be sought after!
All the men in your confederacy
Shall force you to the border;
The men at peace with you
Shall deceive you and prevail against you.
Those who eat your bread shall lay a trap for you.
No one is aware of it.
Obadiah 6

Anonymous said...

Amen. Thank you again, Bro Boldea.
Oh, by the way, is it possible to add a forum or chat room to your blog? I would love to chat about your posts with others! Anyway, thanks again.

In Christ Jesus,
Paul Morris

James Kinsman said...

I don't want to be illegitimate.

Anonymous said...

I love your blogspot. I go there everyday to read and be edified. Thank you so much for taking the time to feed the people of God. It is so important for God's people to grow closer to Him thru His Word. The verse that you quoted at the end of todays blog is Hebrews 12:7-8 and it really speaks to my heart because it shows how much our heavenly Father loves His children. I hope that I have not offended you by restating the scripture. Again, thank you.

Anonymous said...

Michael, I am troubled that you list your astrological sign and zodiac year in your profile. The Bible strictly prohibits "observers of times and seasons". My faith in your witness has been shaken by this revelation. Sincerely, Janine Dumitru

Anonymous said...

Yes. There is nothing more scary as a child or teenager than to be acting out and rebellious and to just be left alone in it. To have no one concerned enough or "big" enough to be able to deal with it or get a handle on me to redirect me was a deeply fearful place to have reached. That was one thing that the Father used to draw me to Himself - the fact that He was Almighty and able to reach and save me from myself. In fact, even now, even though I am not in sin, I start getting worried after a while if He is not chastening me or at least convicting me of something.

Anonymous said...

No chastening seems pleasant at the fact, it is usually very humbling. I am so thankful for those times, because if He did not love me so much, He would have just left me in my sin and error.