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Not So Easy, Is It?

Maybe it has always been this challenging.  Or, perhaps we are just conditioned to analyze everything to the point of absurdity.  Earlier in history, the burden of learning was on the student.  Today, the focus for more intensive scrutiny is on the teacher, the curriculum, the teaching environment, home environment, learning disabilities, eyesight, hearing, IQ, emotional quotient, gender issues, stress factors, economic and sociological status, as well as a host of other factors.  One would think that with all of the attention that is focused on the causes that contribute to poor results, the resolution of any blatant issues would have already been made to boost our successes. However, even with all of our research and good intentions, America’s standing in world education statistics continues to drop. Seemingly everyone has an opinion as to the “why”, but the solution still eludes us.

Jesus addressed learning in His teachings. He placed the responsibility on the learner and seeker. His followers were called “disciples”. The definitions of a “disciple” include “follower, one who gives full loyalty and support to another, a close and persistent attachment. implies a devoted allegiance to the teachings of one chosen as a master”.  Here are quotes from our LORD…

Matt. 5:6Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.

Matthew 11:29Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.

Matthew 4:19And He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”

 For one to become a Christian and grow in faith, there has to be the commitment to learn on the part of the follower.  We know that Jesus is the Master Teacher beyond compare.  Biblical material can be challenging, but there are enough basic principles that even the “simplest” of saints can grow in their understanding of Godliness.  The Holy Spirit illuminates the mind to grasp the truths of God’s Word and fellow believers serve to encourage each other in their quest to be more like Christ.

It is true that we don’t all learn the same way. Adults and teens pursue learning from different paradigms.  And, even Jesus taught in parables, Scripture explanations, discussions with religious leaders, and in times of Q&A with His disciples.  

Teaching is the inculcation of the incomprehensible into the minds of the ignorant by the means of the incompetent…is the transfer of material from the teacher’s notes to the student’s notebook, without it going through either’s minds.

J. Dennis Miller, president of Church Youth Development states that a problem with educating young people in the church stems from a failure to understand how young people learn. He claims that adults learn in the following pattern: 1) acceptance of absolutes; 2) subordination of attitudes and actions to absolutes; 3) application of truth received to life experience. Knowing something as an adult is based primarily upon remembering information and intellectual learning. 

Youth, Miller contends, learn in a different way: 1) evaluation of life experience; 2) discovery of attitudes and actions which validate their life experiences; 3) identifying truth based on their relevance to life experience; 4) acceptance of truths that prove reliable from life experience. Life experience is the main influence on the learning young mind.  (Copied).