THE PROCESS OF UNLEARNING
By Linda Deveney
“Humble yourselves in the presence of
the Lord, and He will exalt you” (James 4:10)
As believers, how does God teach us? In order to learn from
God we first have to unlearn our whole way of thinking. Those of us who have
been in the church for many years are not exempt from the process.
We are born into this world in a sin-sick condition, which
affects not only our spirit, but our minds as well. You might say that we are
born mentally ill, with the tendency to draw away from the things of God. That
doesn’t automatically end when we become believers. It is a process.
To be a maturing Christian we have to unlearn independence
and our lack of trust in God, in what He is doing or not doing. God is still
God, no matter what happens to us. Do you believe it?
The only way our relearning process can begin is through
experiences that create brokenness in us. This brokenness breaks not only our
will but also our spirit, which brings us to the point of humility.
“Humble yourselves in the presence of
the Lord, and He will exalt you” (James 4:10).
We need to replace our independence with dependence on God
for all things and with interdependence on one another in the body of Christ. We
need Him. We need each other.
We also have to replace our unbelief about God with belief.
His word is truth and can be trusted. We can be made whole by applying this
truth. John 8:32 says, “You shall know the truth and the
truth shall make you free.”
Are you experiencing peace during difficult times? If not,
could it be that you are holding onto wrong beliefs about God? That’s exactly
what keeps you in bondage. But how do you let go of wrong beliefs about God? You
first have to know the Word of God for yourself.
In Romans 12:1-2, Paul says, “I urge
you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living
and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of
worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the
renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is
good and acceptable and perfect.” God’s Word renews our minds. The Holy
Spirit teaches us as we seek God’s Word and how to apply it.
God is righteous. Whatever God does is right. His actions
are consistent with His character, which is love (Romans 8:28). In Deuteronomy
32:4 it says, “The Rock! His work is perfect, for all His
ways are just; a God of faithfulness and without injustice, righteous and
upright is He.” Are you doubting God in your circumstances right now? Do
you think you know better then Him?
One area we have to unlearn is taking charge of our own
life and trying to work things out for ourselves. God allows our circumstances
in life to teach us more about Him. Yet so many times we short circuit the
“unlearning” process by taking matters into our own hands and “solving” them.
Waiting on the Lord is more difficult than walking. Waiting
requires patience, which is a rare virtue. When we learn to wait for the Lord’s
leading in everything, it will give us strength that shows up in an even, steady
walk with Him.
Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 10:13 “No
temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful,
who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the
temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure.”
God promises that He will show you how to endure. Are you
listening to Him?
Note: Linda Deveney came to know Jesus Christ as her
personal Lord and Savior in 1982 at the age of 23. She has worked in both
vocational ministry and retail. Linda spent several years as a Bible study
leader, instructing women through teaching them inductive Bible study methods.
After 12 years of marriage she went through a divorce in 2001 and returned to
her maiden name. She has no children of her own.
Currently, she is recovering from a major car accident,
which happened in May of 2003. It took them 1 1/2 hours to get her out of the
car. In the process her left outer ankle was removed. She was life-flighted to
the next state for trauma care where she was admitted with 27 injuries, the
worse being her left leg. That leg has an ankle fusion, the knee is screwed
together, and a titanium plate is holding her thighbone in place. Now living on
Social Security disability, she is continuing the healing process by trying to
regain her ability to walk with less assistance (she gets around by walker and
wheelchair). Trying to regain her ability to walk has brought many setbacks.
Write to Linda: Ron@FridayStudy.org
Especially For Women
Friday Study Ministries, Inc.