Monday, August 22, 2011

Qualities of a Learner 2

In the first post, we looked at two of the Learner Profile Qualities in the IB program and how they relate to life for followers of Jesus. We looked at being caring and being principled. Today I want to look at three more qualities of a learner.

A learner is a thinker. They stop and ponder before they act. They use the mental faculties that God gave them. A learner of Jesus should be a thinker as well. While faith in Jesus is not an intellectual exercise and there are many things that are a mystery to us, we must be thinkers. We are told to test the spirits and to be alert to the schemes of our enemy, satan. To do that we must be able to think and understand. For too many years, too many Christians have blindly followed those who have been able to sway them with appeals to tradition or rules, or by the strength of their personality. Our relationships with others would be vastly improved as well if we would stop and think about whether what we are about to do or say is showing love.

A learner is also open minded. I know open mindedness is considered of the devil by some, and if it meant just blindly swallowing every thing that came down the road (see above) I would agree. I see being open minded as recognizing that I don't have a monopoly on truth, that there are some things that I believe now that will be shown to have been wrong. I always told my Bible students that I believe that when we stand before God he will tell us that we were all wrong about certain things (and no, I don't know what those things will be) Being open minded means being teachable and open to the Spirit changing us as we grow and learn more of Christ.

The next quality of a learner is being knowledgeable. It's close to thinker, in that being a thinker will make you more knowledgeable. Spend time with folks who have grown up in churches, and you will be amazed at the number who know things that just aren't so. There is a lot of misinformation out there. Some of it is spread by preachers who feel free to play fast and loose with Scripture in order to promote their agenda. Some of it is spread by preachers who, quite frankly, are themselves ignorant. Again, while I don't believe following Jesus is an intellectual exercise, and there is much that we just don't know, We have to use our minds so we don't become tossed back and forth with every teaching that looks good on the surface.

May God help us who are learners of Jesus to be caring, principled, thinkers, open minded, and knowledgeable.

2 comments:

Kansas Bob said...

Good stuff Fred. I might add that a learner is also humble. For me learning is a heart thing.

Hope you have been well. My web time has been restricted as my sore back has prevented me from carrying my laptop to the hospital.

co_heir said...

Bob, I agree. Real learning has to come from the heart.

I'm good. How is your wife doing?
Take care of your back. :)

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