Sunday, September 29, 2013

A Passion for Continuous Learning

A house is build by wisdom
and becomes strong through good sense.
Through knowledge its rooms are filled
with all sorts of precious riches and valuables” (Proverbs 24:3-4, NLT)

Do you have a plan for continuous learning? Are you constantly educating yourself, broadening your mind, acquiring new knowledge, reenergizing your interests, and generating new passion and enthusiasm for life? Do you pursue new adventures with God in your work and personal life? Do you intentionally keep on discovering Christ in your everyday life? All of us need to continue learning (and apply what we have learned in a godly manner – that’s ‘wisdom’) so that our faith will be strengthen day by day. Therefore, we need the Holy Spirit to guide and to teach us and a personalized plan – on our side – for continuous learning.

Many weak Christian leaders that I know (unfortunately) have the thinking that once they are graduated from Bible school (or for nominal Christians; right after baptism class) they assume that Bible knowledge and education is over and that they no longer need to continue to learn. This is dangerous! In general, many people who live by a strict diet plans, maintain a regular physical exercise and high discipline in their businesses give very little attention to their plans for developing their minds. There is a saying: “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” Don’t waste it!

Christian who always want and eager to learn is a growing Christian. They know that their God-given mind is a great responsibility from the Lord and that they desire to use it for the glory of God. Here are my 3 ways (and suggestions for you) on how I continue my passion to learn something new about Christ, myself and others:

#1 Reading
Reading and meditating the Word of God is the foremost important for our spiritual life. We ought to read God’s Word with our heart and – our mind. Besides that, I also read the writings and biographies of great people because these kinds of books offer a lot of useful information, very inspirational and encouraging. I also read wide and diverse.

It is too easy and tempting for people to spend hours in front of a television watching programs mindlessly or to surf internet and spend too much time on social media. Great example of mature Christians that I know personally usually prefers to spend time with their Bible or books rather than to join the rest of the world seeking for mere entertainments and pleasures (Of course, there is a time for everything).

#2 Observing
Learn also by observation. I love to go to the malls and public parks just to observe people. John T. Noe writes, “Too many people are more concerned about other people’s observations of themselves than they are about observing others.” If you want to develop a learning spirit, become a keen observer of everything and everybody around you. Better still; observe your spiritual mentors (if you have any). Sought to learn everything you could by watching their every action. Learn from their successes and failures.

#3 Listening
We simply can’t learn if we always do the talking. I always ask students this question: ‘Which one is more important, praying or reading the Word of God?’ Normally I get the answer: ‘Both’. That is right. But if I were to choose only one for an answer, I will say, ‘Reading the Word’. Why? When I pray, I talk to God; when I read, God talk to me. Since God is God and I am not – God’s Word is the most important and the highest priority in the conversation. I must listen more and talk less. Learn to listen to others. You will meet many people – young and old – from whom you can learn… if only you take the time and trouble to listen.

Read. Observe. Listen. Learn and apply.
God’s Holy Spirit be with you – to guide and to teach you. Amen.

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