Life doesn't always make sense. Sometimes we just don’t know what to do. We are faced with difficulties that try our patience and everything we thought we knew about life. It is at times like these, that we simply have to admit that we don’t know everything.
Since we don’t know everything, we have to learn. Learning takes humility. It means admitting that we don’t know what to do. Pride says “I know it all” and humility says, “Teach me.” Since pride is the default mechanism protecting our ego, we are often compelled to be humble before we will learn.
It is no fun to be compelled to do anything, and we fight until we know we can’t win. Finally, on bended knee, we admit out weakness and realize that there is something more that we need to do. This is when we are ready to learn.
As children, we memorized to show what we learned, the math facts, letters of the alphabet, spelling of words, and formulas for scientific experiments. As adults, learning is different. Rather than rote memorization, we concentrate our efforts on seeking understanding.
The world is a complex place. It is impossible for us to know everything in the short amount of time that we are here. The presenting of problem situations channels our learning and gives purpose to our quest for knowledge. The popular adage “…with all thy getting, get understanding” found in Proverbs 4:7 of the Old Testament tells us that understanding is key to any success we experience in life.
We have to understand ourselves first, our strengths and weaknesses, the things we desire, and the things we despise. As we grow in our understanding of ourselves, we are more kind to others when they require understanding.
Next, we seek to understand our loved ones, those with whom we spend the first and last moments of the day. As we grow in our understanding of them, we share the unconditional love that we are in need of to fill our own cups. We also prepare ourselves to understand those who are less important in our lives.
Understanding those with whom we work is a monumental task; however, it is facilitated as we grow in our understanding of people in general. People are like gardens. There are weeds, and there are flowers. Our actions plant seeds of harmony or discord, depending upon what we do and say. The harvest comes in the treatment we receive in return.
We also grow in understanding when we realize that not all of our positive action is met with positive in return. There will be storms and whirlwinds no matter who we are and what we have done. These are vital for our growth and development. Choosing to learn enables us to find peace and happiness, no matter what happens in life.