I just want to ask did you notice the deliberate mistake last week? In the broadcast – the Greatest Showman – God and Barnum – Detecting Ribbons of Truth.
Did you write to me in your droves? Nope, you’ve been very very gracious – thank you. I talked about PT Barnum, Phineas Taylor Barnum but I quoted him as TP Barnum rather than PT! If you found these errors before I sneaked in and corrected the blog, well done!
Sometimes, we think we know so much and then… it’s very much a part of my learning curve – not to get above myself and these simple errors have a way of humbling me and keeping things real!
Today, I’m talking about the learning curve and how important it is to enjoy each and every moment – no matter how frustrating they can be.
I don’t know about you, but I find that each time I start something new, I learned a little more until I get to a point when I think, “that’s enough” and I’m happy to stay at that level and go no further.
Sometimes, I want to go all the way on the learning adventure and know as much as I can possibly learn about that subject. However, the learning curve is not always smooth. It goes in peaks and troughs and many times I want to give up.
Life is like this – a road of learning – each and every day. Life can be a puzzle and it feels that God wants us to learn the most unexpected things!
We expect children to have to learn and be student and have to learn all the time, but adults have to learn too. There is a saying, ‘You can’t teach an old dog new tricks’, but it is possible if the old dog wants to learn! It depends on whether the old dog is always sleepy and wants to be left alone, doing his things in his own way and at his own pace or whether the old dog still wants to know more.
Isn’t it great that God expects us to be the latter, regardless of our age? You see, God hasn’t finished with us. As the Apostle Paul put it,
“He, God, has begun a good work in you and will continue to perfect it until Jesus Christ returns”.
Isn’t this amazing to think about? You and I are still work which are being perfected and we won’t reach perfection, until the end!
We may get moments of aspiration or vision when we feel we’ve reached perfection, but just a little while before carrying on the life’s continual learning curve!
This is something that can be really enjoyable, it can be satisfying or it can be incredibly frustrating. The difficulty we all face, on this road is while we are seeking to achieve, working towards a goal it is easy to miss what is going on right now.
The important thing is to take a snapshot along the way.
Recently, I was talking with my friend, Linda, from Canada, Linda is a wonderful artist and has studied art for many years in her past. Now, she is building on this skill and illustrating her new children’s book.
Despite having past experience and great knowledge she now has to learn further skills and develop her abilities. She’s developing and is excited but it means she looks back on what she has done in the past and becomes critical of it. Now feeling that previous pictures are ‘not good enough’. At the time they were fine. However, the new learning has increased her knowledge, passion and discernment.
The danger is when we get to the point when we only want the future ‘better, improved abilities’, perfectionism creeps in. If this happens there is the possibility that we don’t finish anything or we refuse to believe this it is ‘good enough’ at this moment in time.
- What about your life’s journey and learning curves and bends?
- Where are you going?
- Why are your passions leading you in a certain direction?
I say to you, enjoy the moment that you are at today. Appreciate the learning you have and the progress you have made. Yes, today you can take stock and know you are further along the road than you were yesterday and tomorrow you will grow once more. Don’t let the past or the future steal the wonder of NOW.
I came across a quote by Enoch Powell, which I have adapted slightly:
“If my course moves from sight it doesn’t mean my journey ends. It simply means the road bends”
So, enjoy those bends in your road, the one God has asked you to travel. Keep your frustrations at bay and realise you are so much more than you think you are. Understand that today’s learning is enough for what it is you are doing or need to do and take enormous satisfaction in this. Praise Him for it. God is at work in you, He hasn’t finished with you but He delights in you today and how you are putting your learning into practice right now.