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  • Kimberly Oden

The Importance of Becoming a Life Long Learner

The other day my son had a rough day. He is a verbal processor at times and was sharing all of the downs of the day in front of his friends. I noticed how it affected “the air” around us as well as the friends within earshot. Later that night, I texted this, “Son, there are times that leaders do not have the luxury of wearing their feelings on their sleeve…often times, as a leader goes, so goes the nation that’s following…” I hit “send” on the text thinking how much HE needed to hear the thoughts I shared, but that ignorant bubble of judgment that surrounded my own thoughts popped the following morning.

I slept fitfully that evening as I had the two evenings prior. Even though I woke up exhausted, I arose early, made my coffee, and started my essential oils misting thingee next to my quiet time chair… peace, be still. But the peace quickly turned to correction when I opened my One Year Bible. I had put a bracket around a portion of the New Testament reading years prior so it caught my attention. It was Hebrews 4:9-11.

“So there is a special rest waiting for the people of God. For all who enter into God’s rest will find rest from their labors, just as God rested after creating the world. Let us be diligent to enter that place of rest. For anyone who disobeys…will fall.” YIKES! Not only had I not entered God’s special rest, I had missed several nights of sleep because of it!

In that moment it felt like a holy spanking came down from heaven and landed on my behind! Conviction filled my heart because the very thing I had texted my son the night before was the very thing I had done for the previous week in and throughout the community of LCA. There was just so much to be done and so many pressures surrounding my thoughts, that as I walked through the school, into offices, into conversations, and simply through the hallways, a presence of stress, chaos and pressure followed in my wake…

As I soaked in the revelation of the verse three words/phrases stood out:

  • Rest: There were many different definitions/derivatives from this simple word – one meant a Sabbath rest as in the blessed rest from trials/a cease and desist from all labor and another definition was the figurative repose of a Christian as a type of heaven {on earth}

  • Let us be diligent: means to make haste; to go fast and speedily

  • Disobeys: means a willful obstinacy; a willful decision to reject God’s offers of faith

Ouch again! The only thing I had made haste to was my willful obstinacy and decision to reject God’s offers of faithfulness, and in doing so I had missed out on the heaven-on-earth-cease-and-desist-from-all labor-special-rest that God promised.

You might be thinking, why is she sharing all of this and what in the world does this have to do with Legacy? Well our third core value is Life Long Learning. Once we know Who we can trust (Trustworthy Relationships) and that our identity is secure in Christ (Secure Identity) our hearts are foundationally ready to learn. It is so easy to think that we have “arrived” to some peak of knowledge and revelation, but if we are honest, it is a broad plateau of cushy complacency where we can lose long-term vision and where hearing the Holy Spirit becomes muddled.

I remember stepping into this path of intentional education thinking how awesome it will be to train up our sons in the way they should go, not understanding that the Lord had plans to train me first. Have you heard the phrase, “If mama aint happy, aint nobody happy?” I always thought that indicated that mama must be kept happy in order to keep the home happy, but as I stepped out of the work force and into the role of a stay at home wife and mama, I quickly realized that my role was not to be a thermometer as in one who TAKES the temp OF my home and allow it to indicate my actions, but rather my role was to be a thermostat as in the one who SETS the temp IN my home.

Feelings are valid and real, however they are fleeting, and for me, so often founded on a RESPONSE to facts rather than the Truth of the matter. As I pondered my previous week at Legacy, I knew that the Holy Spirit was prompting me to begin our morning faculty/staff devotions with a confession and to ask for forgiveness. There were only five of us present that morning, but I confessed how willful disobedience to follow my feelings instead of following God into his special rest upset the atmosphere of the school. As I had flown from one meeting to the next, I left stress and pressure in my wake. I asked the staff for forgiveness for not continuing to learn to lead by following the peace and presence of Jesus. They were gracious to forgive. :)

As I close I share this…I can personally empathize with each of you as families who are balancing much with this intentional stewardship of your role as a parent It requires much of us and pushes us beyond cushy complacency moment by moment. My prayer for each of us this morning is that we would understand the greatest aim in the education of our children: To teach them to learn to lead by choosing to follow Jesus, because as they do, a heaven-on-earth-type-of-God-ordained special rest will cover them and keep them in the shadow of His wings! May all of us as parents continue to seek the peace and presence of Jesus so that HIS very presence will be the only thing we leave in our wake!


All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.

2 Timothy 3:16-17

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.

James 1:5

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.

Psalm 32:8

Link to Lay It All Down – love this song! The very cadence of this song will helps me to align my steps with the steps of Jesus!

My Utmost For His Highest

Link to 11.04.2018 devotional that speaks to becoming a Life Long Learner

When a truth of God is brought home to your soul, never allow it to pass without acting on it internally in your will... ~Oswald Chambers

What temperature am I setting?

What kind of wake am I leaving?


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