Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Learning and Teaching

Learning and Teaching
Winston Churchill once said, "…I am always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught.…" (

How true!  I love learning.  Reading, experiencing new things and adventures.  Learning new skills.  However, there are times when I don't like being taught.  Someone makes a statement about a process, or I read a procedure and think, "Why? this makes no sense!" Perhaps a person makes a passing comment, and I take offense.  It might seem churlish, but sometimes being taught is difficult.

If you have ever watched children who don't enjoy a certain subject at school, you find they don't listen, they talk, misbehave or interrupt.  Why?  Well, do you enjoy having someone teach you?  Some people enjoy being taught.  If you have a teacher who is passionate about the subject and engages you in the learning then being taught is not difficult.

If you however, have a teacher who does not engage you, or is rather 'monotone
then you lose interest, don't listen, or perhaps even become offended because you think, "I can do this and I don't need you to tell me!"

So are we ready to learn...and are we ready to be taught?  At some point in the future, we might be the 'teacher' and pass on what we've learnt.  So it would be good to remember that learning needs to be engaging, interesting and positive.

The 'teacher' is also learning.  They don't have all the answers.  Each day we are learning - either through positive or negative situations.

Our best example of a teacher was Jesus Christ.  He taught with authority.  He engaged his listeners.  Sometimes his listeners did not want to learn the lesson he was teaching.  He taught anyway.  Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 11:1, "Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ."

Jesus wasn't monotone.  He challenged those in authority who taught the people but didn't learn from their own teachings.  He gave hope to those who felt that there was no hope.  He engaged those who were not considered worth teaching by society's standards.

Sometimes when I read scripture, I am challenged.  I could even say, in the past I have been offended.  But Scripture makes no apologies for this.  And once I repent and seek what God is trying to teach me, there is no offense, but a desire to learn and engage with Him.

Being taught is not always pleasant.  People usually like to believe that they "know it all" and to admit that you may need to be taught can be, for some, seen as a weakness.  But I don't think being taught is showing weakness.  On the contrary, being a teachable person, means you are willing to engage, willing to admit you don't know everything, willing to sit quietly and listen at times, and other times engage in healthy discussion.

Let's make the most of what we can learn - be ready to learn.  Also, respect and engage with the one teaching you.  One will be a teacher to someone as well!

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