By JORDAN HARRIS
Lead Pastor, Cornerstone Church of Los Banos
School is starting back up, which means it will become a little more difficult to avoid the heat as you’re going back and forth between school and many other activities. Nevertheless, the start of the school year has always seemed to me like a promise that it is the beginning of the end of the heat.
As I watch our young people on their way once again to and from school each day, I find myself thinking back on my own time in school. As I do, I always find that one particular phrase stands out: “dos puntos menos.” It is quite surprising that it’s a Spanish phrase, considering that’s about the extent of what I can remember from my two years with the language in high school
I would like to say that this comes as a result of fifteen years slowly eroding my firm foundation in the language but that is, unfortunately, untrue. The more likely reason is that I was the less-than-ideal student (teachers, you know the kind) and the sheer repetition of getting “minus two points” for participation more days than not has caused this phrase to stick with me.
As you might imagine from this little story, I do not always have the fondest memories of school. If you feel the same, then you may also know how this can cast a shadow on the process of learning in general. However, learning is about more than just schooling. It is about becoming a learner, which is something that we take with us long after we stop attending classes.
We see how being a learner is a lifestyle when we look at Jesus’ ministry. One of the ways people would address Jesus was “Rabbi” which is another way of saying “teacher.” Jesus, in the same manner, would call people to be His “disciples” or “learners.” Here is the most important thing: Jesus was not teaching Spanish declensions or the proper way to hit a curve ball. The thing Jesus was most concerned with was not what you need to know, nor how you ought to do things (though these are certainly integral aspects of the teacher/learner relationship). Jesus is most concerned with who you are becoming.
In fact, becoming in the context of the rabbi/disciple relationship was the very purpose of learning. This week, as you drink your cup of coffee, you may also find yourself thinking back to your time in school. Instead of getting lost on what you learned or how you learned to do things, consider who you are because of what you learned. If you still have a bit of coffee left after that, maybe then ask who you are becoming now, and is that person really who you want to be? I don’t know about you, but when I think about that, there is a lot of distance between where I am and who I want to be. But just like students offer hope that that the August heat is soon to end, there is a promise for all who desire to be like Jesus that, “He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus (Phil. 1:6).”
If you want to know more about being a learner and follower of Jesus, you can always find a way to reach us at www.csclb.org. Give us a call, drop us an email, or stop by on a Sunday. Keep cool and have a great year of learning!