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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1 Samuel 24:16, 17 When David finished saying these things to him, Saul replied, “Is that your voice, David my son?” Then Saul wept aloud and said to David, “You are more righteous than I, for you have done what is good to me though I have done what is evil to you.” (CSB)
1 Samuel 18:5 David marched out with the army and was successful in everything Saul sent him to do. Saul put him in command of the fighting men, which pleased all the people and Saul’s servants as well. (CSB)
1 Samuel 13:13, 14 Samuel said to Saul, “You have been foolish. You have not kept the command the LORD your God gave you. It was at this time that the LORD would have permanently established your reign over Israel, but now your reign will not endure. The LORD has found a man after his own heart, and the LORD has appointed him as ruler over his people, because you have not done what the LORD commanded.” (CSB)