A Teachable Heart
The first thing my parents taught me to pray was “Please give me a teachable heart and a teachable spirit”.
I was not a teachable child. See, at age 3 I already knew how to do everything and didn’t require any instruction. I could work it out all by myself, thank you very much! (My unique way of tying shoe laces pays testament to this fact!)
But I loved Jesus. So when we prayed together and they thanked God for teachable hearts and teachable spirits, I naturally adopted it into my prayer life. What I didn’t understand at 3 years old was that my clever parents were training me to speak something over myself that would build a solid foundation in my life, making learning, school and church so much easier.
Proverbs 22:6 in the New King James says “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”
The NIV puts it slightly differently; “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.”
Even today, as I walk into Uni, I thank God for a teachable heart and a teachable spirit because I know it will make a difference to my day. It changes my attitude to my teachers and my work. My training has started me in a direction I now choose to follow.
So who are you training? And how are you training them?
Children learn by copying those around them. Sometimes as adults, we forget that we do the same. We pick up the phrases and habits of those we spend time with and often, we’re not even aware of the changes until someone points them out. Just because you’re not preaching or teaching from a stage doesn’t mean your life is not having an impact on the people you live or work with.
But what are you doing intentionally?
My parents saw that I needed something, so they found a way for me to get hold of it despite my desire to figure everything out by myself. They modelled a way of living and speaking and praying when they knew I was watching (and when they didn’t) so that I could ‘figure it out by myself’. They created an environment where I was never reliant on their walk with God but had the space and tools to build my own. They responded to situations with faith so I learnt to do likewise, rather than react emotionally.
So today, what habits and behaviour are you putting on display? How are you influencing and training those around you? Who are you intentionally going to train and start off in the right direction by the way you live a Spirit filled life?