Back to school

The “Back-to-School” season is upon us. For some, that brings anxious thoughts. For others, it is an exciting time – a time to meet new friends, foster existing relationships, participate in a wealth of enjoyable activities, and most importantly, an opportunity to engage in learning.

Those who embrace the opportunity for learning will find that they grow in knowledge, understanding, and capability. It is the fruit of hard work and motivation.

When the back-to-school season approaches, I am always reminded of my grade school days. Like many youngsters in grade school, I failed to see the bigger picture and the importance of fully embracing the opportunity to learn. Parent-teacher conferences usually produced a familiar report from my teachers. My grades were not bad, but my parents would often come home from those conferences with this observation from the teacher: “Your daughter could be an “A” student, if she would just apply herself a little more.”

It was a statement that held both promise and a little hard work for me. I always enjoyed hearing the promise and compliment in that statement. It made me feel good to think that someone saw that kind of potential in me. Sometimes it would instill a little motivation to improve, but far too often the motivation was short-lived. I lacked the commitment to engage in working to make it a reality. Who knows what benefits were forfeited because I lacked commitment in my pursuit to learn?

We often fall victim to that same lack of motivation when it comes to the opportunities we have to grow in our knowledge and understanding of God. Like the observations made by my grade school teachers, I think God makes some similar observations for our lives. These kinds of thoughts can be heard in words like those He spoke through the prophet Jeremiah. “And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:13 NKJV) This is a statement that holds both a promise and a little work for us. We can find God and know God, if we are willing to engage in learning to search for Him. When we find God, we find His love, His grace, and His wisdom for every facet of life.

Life is not always easy, but it does present us with countless opportunities to learn who God is and how much He loves us. This learning will take place if we will apply ourselves to the study of His Word and the classroom of prayer, while we participate in the laboratory of life. God does not want us to forfeit the blessings or the revelations He has for us. They are available to anyone who will willingly engage in the pursuit to learn, so let’s get back to school!

Rev. DeVawn Beckman is the associate pastor at the West Minot Church of God.