Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Is God Your Teacher?

Photo Courtesy of Piotr Lewandowski
I can't tell you how many times a day I repeat myself to my children. Some days I consider recording certain sentences and playing them on a continuing loop, so I can save my time and my breath. Others, I'm sure my kids wish my voice was a broken record they could toss in the garbage and forget about.

Too often, I find myself wondering why they haven't learned the lesson. Why can't they remember a simple instruction like, "Put your seat belt on when you get into the car?" Or, "Don't hit your brother. Treat him like you want to be treated. I'm sure you don't like it when he hits you for no reason."

Whenever I consider my children and the lessons they can't learn the first time, I can't help but reflect on my hard-learned lessons in life. Multiple times I bent over for the proverbial whipping from God because I didn't get it right the first time. Like me with my children, He has not spared His rod. He has brought swift discipline every time. It became my choice if I listened the first time or suffered the consequences of my ill choices.

I always thrive when God, rather than life, is my teacher. Throughout my lifetime of lesson-learning, experience has never proven the better instructor. God is the better instructor. When I've chosen to obey His direction, goodness and mercy follow my choice. When I've chosen to let experience teach, I've found myself wallowing in the mire, wishing I'd listened to wisdom over desire.

"I have not departed from Your judgments,
 For You Yourself have taught me."
 - Psalm 119:102

This verse caught my attention as I read my Bible this afternoon. For You Yourself have taught me. 

I've had many teachers in my life. My parents. My grandparents. My baby sitters. My elementary and high school teachers. My college professors. Counselors. Authors of books. Spiritual parents. Sunday school teachers. But no lesson is quite as learned as when God brings it. There's something eternal that happens when the Holy Spirit opens up a scripture and my heart receives it. It comes alive. It breathes into my being and says, "This is the way. Walk in this. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow you all the days of your life." Warm fuzzies travel from somewhere deep within me and bring tingles to my skin. My heart grasps what my brain tried processing for years, and I suddenly "get it." It refreshes my inner man and brings life to my spirit.

So I ask you today, who's your teacher?


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