Since the dawn of humanity, God saw fit to bless our species with a lavish gift:
The ability to learn.
With every passing generation, we accumulate more and more information. Presently, that information has never been easier to access. It has also never been easier to lose what is useful in an ocean of inane nonsense.
I finished compulsory education in 2007; twelve years ago, which is, incidentally, almost the same amount of time that I was in compulsory education. Yet, I’m only just entering my fourth decade! There is so much more time to learn, and more knowledge to acquire than we can fathom.
But here’s the problem. Our ability to learn is a gift that we often tuck away like those well-intentioned but poorly chosen gestures from friends that don’t know you quite as well as they think they do. The sort of gift you’re grateful for, but not exactly in a hurry to use. The sort of gift that gets replaced with the latest Stranger Things season, YouTube videos of dogs being cute or fighting for that latest solo victory on Fortnite.
There are so many things that can hinder our continual education: the busyness of work, family life, church commitments, straight-up laziness (that totally describes me today…don’t worry, it is my day off!) and so on.
But choosing to commit to a lifelong learning journey is crucial for a ton of reasons. Here are just a few to get us started:
- It helps us to be better informed about important issues.
- It helps us to serve and honour our friends and family better.
- It helps us to work more effectively.
- As Christians, a greater understanding of the Bible leads us to a greater understanding of Jesus.
- It helps us to understand this fascinating universe that we live in!
Of course, there are pitfalls to the pursuit of knowledge when pursued above all else. It can make us prideful and self-righteous. It can make us unkind. Unloving. Let’s not be those people. Let’s strive to be as prepared as humanly possible to be used by God in the best way possible. Read some books; watch some documentaries; watch some of the incredible educational videos out there. Ask people questions. Just learn something new.
“Let the wise hear and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance” – Proverbs 1:5 (NIV)
My prayer is that at the end of each year of our lives, we would be pushing ever closer towards knowledge; towards wisdom; and towards Jesus. That’s a picture that excites me. Doesn’t that excite you too?