Are you teachable? Some personalities are prone to be less teachable than others.
Are you like me? My energies and thoughts are ignited as I go…working and planning and doing. I see the big picture before the ground is even broken, and can’t wait to demolish and rebuild. Or are you more like my husband; the quiet spectator who observes, asks questions, and mentally gathers and organizes information quietly before he forms an opinion or plan of action? By the time he has his mind made up, I’ve already begun demolition and construction in my zone.
I’m a go getter. I think I know better. My way is the best way, why can’t everyone just see that? If they’d just try things my way, they’d see how brilliant it is, and how much time could be saved in the simplicity of my plan. They might have valid ways that work for them, but really, my way could save you so much time and pain. (Insert prayer for humility here, lol)
Part of this is personality driven, and seems inevitable. But I don’t think just because I have a strong personality and am driven to perform and produce that I am beyond learning and growing. Let’s face it, none of us have arrived. Personality aside, there comes a point where we need to grow past the point of always being the one who knows it all, and stretch out of our comfort zones and grow. Maybe it’s time we put ourselves in the position of student/learner, and in humility, consider someone else in the place of teacher/instructor. I’m starting to understand and believe deeply that if we don’t learn from being instructed, we will be taught by experience…and really, I’m tired of learning the “hard knocks” way.
I have started doing something that does not come natural to me. Instead of spouting off my opinion in any given situation, I have started intentionally shutting my mouth and waiting for someone else to speak first. It’s near impossible to speak only when spoken to or asked for an opinion, but I’m trying. I feel like Anne of Green Gables, “…if you only knew how much I want to say and don’t, it would be some credit“. I am trying to develop the habit of inquiring of others, to draw out a quieter personality and give them the opportunity to engage in an otherwise one sided conversation. The trick, I’m finding is listening, and keeping my mouth shut.
It’s amazing how much I learn when I do this. I have a niece (who is much more introverted than her auntie) who says some of the wisest things when I’m quiet, lol. I hear her heart for loving the Lord, and waiting for His time, and learning to be still while He’s working.
If we want to continue to learn and grow, we have got to admit that we need a teacher. God comes to us in many ways, it’s up to us whether we learn from his examples or continue to stubbornly insist on our own way. Right now, I’m learning to be still. I’m learning to be quiet. I’m learning to listen, and learn. I’m learning to grow up in Him.