Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Why Study?

I was always under the impression that once I was a "grownup", my need to study would end. Nothing could be further from the truth. I find myself having to study things all the time, because there are always new things to learn. Now I have to admit, most of the time I study things because I need to learn about them for a practical reason. Studying the use of technology, for example, was motivated by a desire to use it in my ministry.
But I was challenged during this trip to recapture the original reason for studying and learning: to help me gain wisdom. But studying alone is not enough. Love is what generates wisdom. If we try to study things from God's point of view we can gain wisdom, because we make ourselves one with God. For example, if I am studying thee current political situation in the USA, Libya, or any other country, if I merely gather information and try to process it from my own point of view, I may gain knowledge but not wisdom. It is an entirely different situation when I try to see it as God does, since the starting point is completely different.
We have been challenged here to look at things differently, and this is one area that I believe could impact many people. If we truly want to become wise, we should start by spending our time wisely. And study can be a wonderful way to use our time, provided we are really seeking wisdom. This means I have to get back to something I thought I had finished with many years ago - philosophy. We are all called to become philosophers, because the word Philosophy means "lover of wisdom." And in order to become more like God, who is all wise, we should try and become as wise as we can. Age is not what brings about wisdom, because I know many older people who are anything but wise. No, the way we approach life is what counts. Those who are constantly open to learning new things, to discovering God in new ways - these are the people who become wise. And this is a great reason to study!

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