Does your child hate school? Do they struggle learning? Today AMBrewster begins a three part study to help Christian parents teach their kids about God and themselves through the medium of learning.
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Thank you for joining me today. I’m super excited about our topic. I’ve been teaching this every year since 2007, and it’s an important part of the foundation for all of my interactions with my kids.
This series is part of a larger group of shows called “Teach Your Children to _______.” Though nearly all of our shows can be used to teach your children important Truths concerning God and themselves, we’ve created the following episodes specifically to equip you pass on this unique information to your kids.
Like the author of a curriculum provides you all the tools necessary to teach a subject, these episodes should get you on your way to passing on invaluable, biblical Truths. In fact, many of the episodes are designed to have the kids listen along.
So far we have:
Teach Your Children about Emotions, Teach Your Children to Communicate Biblically, Teach Your Children to Avoid Waste, Teach Your Children to Stop Tattling, Teach Your Children Why They Do What They Do, Teach Your Children How to Love, Teach Your Children how to Obey, Teach Your Children the Importance of Chores, Teach Your Children to Discover God’s Will for Their Lives, Teach Your Children about True Friendship, Teach Your Children the Importance of Church, Teach Your Children about Family Worship, Teach Your Children about the Nature of Sin, and Teach Your Children about the Danger of Foolishness.
And today we start with Teach Your Children to Learn.
If it’s not already up, we plan to have all of these episodes only a click away at TruthLoveParent.com under the Podcast tab.
Not only do we have all of these free podcasts from which to learn and with which to teach your kids, but we also have free episodes notes available for most — if not all — of the episodes.
Team TLP and I love God and your family and we are passionate about applying all of the Bible to our home lives.
Ray and Carolyn are two people who are extremely excited about helping TLP reach as many families as we can with the Word of God. That’s why they became TLP Patrons. They signed up at patreon.com, and each month a certain amount of money is effortlessly donated to TLP.
People can become Patrons for only $1 a month, and there are special gifts associated with each level of giving.
I encourage you to click on the “5 Ways to Support TLP” link in the description of this episode to learn more. And I would ask you to pray carefully to determine whether or not the Lord would be glorified by you partnering with Truth.Love.Parent. in this way.
Alright, let’s jump into today’s topic. And I encourage you to have the kids participate with these episodes. I’ll say many parenting-specific things, but I’ll also present the information so that it’s valuable for the kids.
Let’s start by defining our terms. According to Merriam-Webster, to learn is “to acquire knowledge by study, instruction, or experience.”
Next, we must accept the fact that we cannot be made to learn, nor can we make our children learn. This goes for academic subjects as well as common sense subjects and spiritual subjects.
Still, we and our children must understand that we made to learn.
1. God created us to learn.
Think about this. If we were incapable of learning we would all be unable to move. Each of us had to learn to roll over, crawl, stand, walk, and run.
If we were incapable of learning, we wouldn’t be able to communicate. Regardless of the language we use, the vast majority of the people listening to the sound of my voice learned to make sounds and then link those sounds together to form words and link those words together to form ideas. And — as we’ve grown — our communication should have matured with us.
Lastly, if we were incapable of learning, none of us would even know how to eat. Children are born with some very basic instinct concerning the necessity of food and how to eat it, but they still need to be helped to learn to do it correctly and efficiently.
Think about it this way — if God had not created us to learn . . . we would have died days after birth.
This is a very important realization for our kids because they too often convince themselves that they can’t learn new concepts.
The truth of the situation is usually that they don’t want to learn the new material because it’s uncomfortable, so they convince themselves it’s too hard.
Let me land on that idea for a minute.
Is Math or Science or English or mechanics or Chemistry or Economics or Speech really hard? What does hard mean?
When the word “hard” is used in these situations, it’s generally intended to mean difficult. The tenth definition of “hard” in the Merriam-Webster dictionary is “difficult to accomplish or resolve.”
But even that is subjective. Sure, something may be hard for me, but what if it’s not hard for someone else?
Ah, as Shakespeare would say, “Therein lies the rub.”
If I’m a child and I believe that you’re asking me to do something that is too hard, then I’m not going to want to do the job, I’m not going to think it’s even possible for me to do the chore, and I may develop an attitude toward you for requiring me to do something that’s too hard for me.
However, the reality is that what the authority asked me to do isn’t too hard. Sure, it’s different. I’m not familiar with it. But, what I’m being asked to do is not too hard.
For example. If I tried to teach you Chinese, many of the people listening to me would complain that it’s too hard. But I would reply, “But toddlers in China do it all the time.”
You see, if it’s truly too hard, then someone younger and less intelligent than you shouldn’t be able to do it.
The real crux of the matter is not that something is too hard, it’s that it’s new. It’s different.
As a child, when I look at it this way, I can rest assured that it may be difficult right now, but it’s not too difficult. I can learn this, and as I become better acquainted with the information and practice the skills necessary, this will cease being hard. In fact, one day I will consider it so easy that I won’t even think about it. And I definitely won’t have a bad attitude toward my authority because they’re not unreasonable people asking me to do something that’s impossible for me.
Consider another real life example. Assuming that your bodies all function normally, most of the people listening to my voice can walk. Now, none of you can remember what it was like learning to walk, but most of you have watched other people learn to walk.
Babies don’t complain that it’s too hard. They’re generally excited to learn this very new and challenging skill, and regardless of how many tumbles they take, how many times they bump their heads, and how many times they scrape their knees, the baby continues to practice undaunted. And the cool thing is that most children aren’t taught to stand or walk or run. They learn it naturally. They learn to speak in many of the same ways.
Generally speaking, it’s not that the subject is genuinely too difficult for us to learn, we’ve just gown into an overdeveloped sense of pride, arrogance, and laziness.
Pride keeps me from wanting to learn from you.
Arrogance convinces me I already know what I need to know.
And laziness makes me certain that doing something less strenuous and more “fun” would be better.
Sinful though little children may be, at least they don’t struggle to the same extent with these same “mature” sin habits.
All of this to say that God created you to learn. The fact that you’re sitting there listening to me and understanding what I’m saying is proof of that fact.
But we need to embrace learning for more reasons than we were created to learn.
2. God requires us to learn.
That’s right. God commands us to learn.
Consider Proverbs 9:9: “Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.”
Now, that passage could sound simply like cause and effect. Wise and just people simply increase in learning, but it’s not a command.
So consider Proverbs 1:5: “Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance.”
And consider Isaiah 1:17 where we’re very bluntly told to, “Learn to do good.”
And then II Timothy 3:14 exhorts us to, “continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it.”
Each of these passages makes it clear that God expects us to learn.
And this makes sense. He created us to learn, why wouldn’t He expect us to do what He created us to do?
This has application for everyone in the family. Dad, Mom, you’re not off the hook. I hope that you have a regular habit of learning and studying and growing just like you expect from your kids.
And when it comes to spiritual things, we will be doing that for all eternity — even in a perfect state!
But I know what many of you are thinking. “Listen, I understand what you’re saying, but what I’m being asked to do is genuinely too hard. You don’t know my teacher. You don’t know how my brain works. You don’t know how impossible it is to stand up for God in my public school.”
Picture this. What if I asked you to pick up my car. And this is not a trick question. I’m not referring to a toy car. I want you to pick up my Kia Sedona. It weighs about 4,500 pounds.
Initially, all of you would consider that an impossible feat.
Then some of you would wonder if there were any restrictions. You’d be curious if I expected you to do it by yourself in your own strength.
Even if I told you that all I wanted you to do was to get the car off the ground and that you didn’t have to do it in your own strength, some of you would still throw up your hands and say it couldn’t be done because you don’t access to those resources.
But what if I told you to lift my van off the ground, and that I would provide you anything and everything you might need in order to do it.
Now, you’re probably excited thinking about the possibilities.
Some of you are thinking about hiring a bunch of strong men to lift it up. Some of you are imagining renting a crane. Some of you may even be picturing a contraption that would make Wiley E. Coyote proud and would probably involve a rocket and roller skates.
My point is, once you realize that all of the necessary resources are available to you, it makes an otherwise impossible task easy.
You’re right. I may not know how your mind works, I don’t know your teacher, and I don’t know the kids in your public school, but I do know that God not only created us to learn and requires us to learn . . .
3. God empowers us to learn.
I love Proverbs 2:6 — “For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.”
Remember that learning is the acquisition of knowledge. This verse tells us that knowledge and understanding both come from God.
That means that we need Him in order to learn anything.
This is true in two senses.
A. By God’s common grace He has created all of us to learn and provides us the skills necessary to learn what we must learn.
B. More specifically, as children of God we know that the Holy Spirit helps us to learn unique things and learn them in a unique way. Unbelievers wouldn’t have access to that understanding.
Do you believe that? Do you honestly believe that God will give you the strength and power necessary to learn whatever He tasks to learn?
Do you also believe that God wants you in school? Do you believe that He wants you to learn about Him from His Word? Do you believe that He wants your parents to teach you about life and godliness from the Bible and from their experiences?
Most of our attitude concerning learning would drastically change if we simply acknowledged that God wold never ask us to do anything that He has will not equip us to do.
Of course, on the flip side of that point, we must not naively assume that God will cause us to learn everything we need to learn without our effort.
It wouldn’t matter if I gave you $1,000,000 to lift my van. If you did nothing, the van wouldn’t move an inch.
We need to acknowledge that though the Lord provides learning to all who ask . . . we must work for it. Proverbs 8:17 tells us, “I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently find me.”
In this passage, wisdom is being personified as a woman, and she makes the important observation that we won’t simply learn without putting in the effort.
On our next episode we’re going to discuss The Circle of Learning. The Circle illustrates the way God created us to learn and will help us learn better.
Will you please share this episode; this information is super important for all families.
And don’t forget about the episode notes at Taking Back the Family.
I know that children seem to grow out of their love for learning, but we believe they can mature in it to the glory of God if they choose to believe that God created them to learn, requires them to learn, and empowers them to learn, and submit to His plan for their learning.
So, to that end, I’ll see you next time.
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