Daily D – Proverbs 12:1
To learn, you must love discipline; it is stupid to hate correction. PROVERBS 12:1 (NLT)
Continuing education is required to maintain many certifications. This led to sitting in front of a computer screen for hours across a couple of weeks. This included teaching videos and quizzes followed by a major test. One final project wrapped up the individual training before a one-on-one meeting with a live instructor.
I passed everything with flying colors right up until the final assignment given by the live instructor. Quickly completing what she asked, I hit SEND and was done! Except, maybe I hit SEND a little too quickly. The answers were correct but did not demonstrate the depth and breadth of understanding and application necessary from her viewpoint. The truth is, I similarly assessed myself moments after submitting my response.
The instructor was gracious and gave me another opportunity. This time, the answers were more complete. They still were not precisely what she was looking for from me. We scheduled a thirty-minute Zoom meeting. We had a great discussion. She heard what she needed to hear a few minutes into our time together. I am now officially certified and have part of my required continuing education credits for another three years. Yay!
Next, I begin this week on another certification process with this same instructor. I will slow down and provide more robust answers to the final questions than I did the first time around. As the genie said about Aladdin, “He can be taught!”
Some people cannot be taught, or so it seems. Learning is a discipline. Teachers cannot make a student learn. They can facilitate learning. They can utilize the tools of learning. They can provide opportunities for students to demonstrate learning. They cannot, however, make a student learn. Students have to want to learn.
Students also have to get comfortable with correction. Some of us do not like correction at all. We prefer to think we are always right. No one is always right. Not even me. See the evidence above. Not even you. If you need help with evidence to prove this fact, let me know.
My first attempts at learning how to swing a golf club came during a college physical education course. The instructor did the best he could with thirty students. He was one of the football coaches. He gave a lot of attention to pretty coeds and some of the more accomplished golfers. I learned enough to demonstrate that I was pretty bad.
Years later, a golf pro cringed at my initial attempts under his tutelage. He corrected one thing at a time patiently for a couple of months. Things got so good that I did not embarrass him when he took me out on the course. After a twenty-year layoff, I require a coach once more. My most recent attempt saw me lose the six golf balls in my possession long before the round was over.
How do you know you need remedial golf instruction? When you run out of little white balls long before you run out of pretty green grass.
Love discipline. Love correction. Or at least, like it enough that you seek it out so that you can improve whatever you are learning or applying. Trust me, life is a lot less embarrassing and uncomfortable when we practice the disciplines of learning. It gets even better when we are willing to accept correction.
I will love learning and accept correction.
Our Father, please give me a teachable spirit. Correct me as often as necessary to overcome my deficient understanding and practice. Amen.
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Isaiah 30:18 Therefore the LORD is waiting to show you mercy, and is rising up to show you compassion, for the LORD is a just God. All who wait patiently for him are happy. (CSB)
Matthew 14:29 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter answered him, “command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” And climbing out of the boat, Peter started walking on the water and came toward Jesus. (CSB)
Matthew 14:19, 20 Then he commanded the crowds to sit down on the grass. He took the five loaves and the two fish, looking up to heaven, he blessed them. He broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. Everyone ate and was satisfied. They picked up twelve baskets full of leftover pieces. (CSB)