“For we live by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7 NIV
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)
God has a perfect plan for each of us, but He won’t reveal it all at once. Our personal journey through childhood is to prepare and equip us for adulthood. This applies to our spiritual journey as well.
Life on earth is God’s classroom and we are His students. Our Father is a hand’s on and interactive teacher. He knows that we learn our lessons best if we experience them first hand. When we identify the problem He has placed before us, we must use the tools and knowledge He has previously given us to solve the lesson. But solving the “problem” is not all He requires from His students.
A major key to comprehension is the application of the newly acquired knowledge to life circumstances. Learning is not just understanding a concept, but testing and applying it in real life. Then after applying it to the real world, an assessment must be made. From the evaluation there must come revisions and then new testings, with a goal to perfect the lesson God has asked us to learn.
If you think there is only one lesson for each concept God wishes to teach, you are sadly mistaken. Take love as an example. There are many forms of love and many lessons we must learn regarding this powerful Fruit of the Spirit. Time and time again lessons of love will be placed on our desks. Time and time again we must strive to explore the riches and powers of love. The mysteries of this spiritual gift are endless.
This isn’t to say that observing others who face obstacles should be ignored. We can always glean wisdom by watching how others carry themselves through a struggle. However, there is no substitute for living a lesson ourselves and rising above the struggle.
So what is the purpose of school? Educating, informing, applying knowledge to benefit the community are all objectives. By gaining knowledge and understanding, we can help others around us. Social interaction helps us to learn empathy and compassion, as well as confidence and the importance of friendship. Relationships are formed and built at school.
The Body of Christ goes to school and learns spiritual lessons. Like many kids in public schools, Christians are put on Individualized Education Plans. We were knit together in very special and unique ways, so we will learn and grow in spiritual maturity in very individual ways as well.
Just as every student has a special aptitude for subject matter, we have special spiritual gifts and talents. These spiritual gifts are to be used to bless and benefit our Christian community, and those outside of it.
Love never fails, so extending God’s love to others who are unbelievers is just another commission from God. We should never hide our light under a bushel.
If you find yourself inside of a trial, consider yourself in God’s school. Your classroom is full of other students trying to solve their own individual problems. You may even have a math worksheet in front of you! Could God be teaching you about tithing? Has He asked you to trust Him to provide for your financial needs? Is the problem a lesson in debt?
There are social studies lessons in our God’s classroom. One lesson could be about politics, and how we must respect those in power over us. Maybe He has handed you a lesson on prayer and how we must humble ourselves as a nation, praying for national repentance and revival.
We are in a classroom and we are students. What kind of student are you now, and what kind of student do you aspire to be in the future? Have you shown your HEAVENLY TEACHER the proper respect due Him? Maybe you are interrupting His lesson with behavioral issues. Could you be running off to the bathroom in order to avoid the task at hand? Have you thanked Him for the time He has invested in preparing individualized lessons that serve you best? Are you distracted and playing with your pencil, or are you using your “tools” to solve the problem He as given you? How badly do you want to advance to the next level in this earthly classroom?
“ For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)