Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Teacher, The Learner, and The Classroom - By Eileen Knowles


I drifted off to sleep last night thinking about the word disciple and the words from a devotional I read not too long ago came to mind:

 “The word disciple means ‘learner,’ so a disciple of Jesus is a learner of Jesus...a continual process of absorbing and practicing the teachings of Jesus." Personally, I think I actually prefer the word learner over the word disciple.

For some reason, the word learner has a way of humbling me. In order to be a learner I must be teachable and in order to be teachable I must show up for class (so to speak) with a pliable heart. Learning and knowing and understanding is a life long journey of choosing to be a student. As we learn and as we wrestle, we grow. Yet, we never reach a time where we graduate and stop attending classes or meeting with our teacher.

 From the moment we wake until the moment we sleep again, we are in the classroom where Professor Jesus comes alongside us to help each student make sense of all the material.  And, as we learn, we are given opportunities to encourage others to become learners and to sign up for this life long adventure of learning.

 “Now that same day two of them were on their way to a village called Emmaus, which was about seven miles from Jerusalem. Together they were discussing everything that had taken place.  And while they were discussing and arguing, Jesus Himself came near and began to walk along with them.” Luke 24: 13-15

Here are some thoughts that stood out to me after reading this passage not too long ago: The students were in the “classroom”…together.  They were discussing and arguing over the class work…together. And as they wrestled and questioned, guess who shows up to help them understand the material?  The teacher!   I love how this translation puts it, “And while they were discussing and arguing, Jesus Himself came near and began to walk along with them.”

I loved this reminder today: the Teacher, Himself promises to be in the classroom with us. When we make a commitment to show up for class, our teacher will be there to journey with us through all the challenging questions.   

Today, I want to show up for class.  I want to learn from the teacher.  No matter how confusing or how many questions arise, I want to remember that all the answers I am seeking are found in the classroom and near the Teacher.

“The 11 disciples (learners) traveled to Galilee, to the mountain, where Jesus had directed them, When they saw Him, they worshiped, but some doubted. Then Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go, therefore, and make disciples (learners) of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember,I am with you always to the end of the age.”  Matt 28: 16-20

A few more thoughts about those first 11 learners of Jesus we read about in Scripture:

They were far from perfect after their decision to become life long learners of their teacher Jesus. 

Sometimes they argued. Sometimes they doubted. Sometimes they stuck their foot in their mouths. Sometimes they were confused. Sometimes they were scared. Sometimes they were proud and stubborn.

And then sometimes they trusted. Sometimes they listened. Sometimes they walked on water. Sometimes they had faith that moved mountains, set captives free and prompted the lame to dance again!

Lord, help us to be learners today.  Your desire is to be in the classroom with us. Your desire is to teach us, grow us and love us...even on those days when we get it wrong.

Lord, give us hearts eager to learn from you today!


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