Last week, I needed to effectively share a new direction for our department with my staff members so we could move in unity towards new goals that would align our workflow, improve efficiency, meet customer service initiatives and quality goals. One group allows me to speak directly, provide a few bullet points and statements to communicate the changes. Others in my team needed to know the reasons behind the changes with clearly defined explanations. A third group had intuitively seen the end goal and only needed reinforcement in their current activities. A leader, communicator, educator or parent must understand how their target audience processes information and what will bring them to understanding.
I am not a formal educator, but I have come to some basic beliefs that the communication of ideas, thoughts, and processes may require various forms of communication. Auditory learners gravitate to podcasts, in-person lectures or events. Visual learners enjoy graphics and videos to help them capture a full understanding. Tactile learners will dissect or examine every angle of a piece of equipment in order to fully grasp the elements and opportunities.
Show me Your ways, O Lord; Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; On You I wait all the day. Remember, O Lord, Your tender mercies and Your lovingkindnesses, For they are from of old. Do not remember the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions; According to Your mercy remember me, For Your goodness' sake, O Lord. Good and upright is the Lord; Therefore He teaches sinners in the way. The humble He guides in justice, And the humble He teaches His way. All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth, To such as keep His covenant and His testimonies. For Your name's sake, O Lord, Pardon my iniquity, for it is great. Psalm 24:4-11 NKJV
During this Lenten season, the Holy Spirit is guiding me in a self-evaluation of my thoughts and deepest desires. My auditory self verbally expresses my desires through prayer straining to hear a reply. My visual learning self, pictures me at a crossroad, asking Adonai which direction I should go. My tactile self wants to get busy, organizing, planning, moving, decluttering the things I do not see as necessary while agonizing over things that I am reluctant to release. I beseech the Holy Spirit to answer in a way I can clearly “hear.” I anxiously anticipate Creator God revealing the way He has determined is best while at the same time identifying what things I will need or not need down the road. Redeeming Savior, please rescue me from all this confusion!
Beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:8-9 NKJV
While I am confident in this…my God is big enough to overcome all obstacles that hinder my understanding of His truth. He is patient with me, repeating important passages during my moments of spiritual quietness until I understand. He provides friends to walk alongside me to encourage me to keep searching for His will and direction. He brings to mind past experiences of His faithful love and provision to assure me that His hand is guiding me and that I need to throw off everything that hinders.
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. Hebrews 12:1-3 NKJV
Adonai is patient with us. He will use our circumstances to challenge us toward an often uncomfortable change in order to grow us in depth of character and understanding of His Word. The book of Leviticus is likely one of the least read books in Scripture. Why? Because it identifies sin. Until we see our thoughts, words, and actions from the Holy One’s perspective, we can never move toward fully understanding the holiness of the Creator and the sinfulness of the created. Sin blinds us to our sin, prevents us from understanding the price of that sin. It’s a vicious cycle that can only be broken by the realization that the little ungodly "mistakes" or slip-ups lead us to tolerate larger offenses. Only when we open our eyes and consciously decide that a little understanding of the Holy One is not good enough will the cycle be broken.
For I desire mercy and not sacrifice, And the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings. Hosea 6:6 NKJV
The cross eliminated the need for the twice-daily animal sacrifices required in Leviticus during the tabernacle and temple periods. However, it does not negate the list of sins addressed. A humble spirit, an open heart and a mind that seeks to know the will of the Father will bring us to an intimate knowledge of the LORD and a realization of our sin. His patient guidance to understanding leads us to a repentant spirit when we comprehend the depth of our transgressions, the holiness of YHVH, our need for a Savior, and the cost of our sin.
Show me Your ways, O Lord; Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; On You I wait all the day. Remember, O Lord, Your tender mercies and Your lovingkindnesses, For they are from of old. Do not remember the sins of my youth, nor my transgressions; According to Your mercy remember me, For Your goodness' sake, O Lord. Good and upright is the Lord; Therefore He teaches sinners in the way. The humble He guides in justice, And the humble He teaches His way. Psalm 25:4-9 NKJV
Most teachers will tell you that the greatest moments as an educator are the “Ahah!” moments, when the expression on a student’s face communicates that everything the teacher has been trying to explain begins to align in the student’s mind, understanding replacing confusion. The greatest teachers tirelessly work for these moments, not ceasing in their efforts until comprehension has been realized. The teacher can now move toward the next challenge when the current concept has been grasped.
Loving God, Adonai, Elohanu, create in me a clean heart, a contrite spirit, so I will fully understand the depth of Your love and my blindness to the understanding of my sinfulness. Open my heart so I can be filled with wisdom and knowledge, generosity, mercy, and kindness. Please be patient with me as I seek to grow in my spiritual and intellectual knowledge of Your holiness. Amen