The Privileged Life: Learning New Skills

“…aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands….” 1 Thessalonians 4:11

This weekend, I set out to accomplish two new, unrelated things—learn a taekwondo “form” and put down carpeting—both involving physical and mental calisthenics.

At my age, it takes so much more effort now to learn muscle memory as well as brain memory! It’s a challenge for me to work through a series of taekwondo maneuvers with hands, feet, and stance all going different directions…they sent my mind and inner-ear balance spinning into orbit.

Installing carpet? Brand new adventure. This required pulling up tightly-glued-down old linoleum, cutting and nailing down the hook trim, making a template of the floor space from newspapers, slicing the carpet to fit, and securing it to the floor. (Before you think highly of my efforts, I have to admit—it was only for a walk-in closet.) 

Both jobs took longer than I had budgeted time for them. I’m hoping it’s because they required me to learn new skillsets that were unfamiliar, processes that pushed me outside my comfort zone. And that’s a good thing.

It’s easy to become complacent, to get in a comfortable routine that doesn’t put much stress on us. Even if our lives are hectic, we typically don’t want to step beyond the familiar rut. But, who wants to live in a rut forever? 

While I didn’t perform everything flawlessly, it doesn’t matter. I needed to learn something new. I pushed myself closer to the next belt level in taekwondo. The carpeting was finished. And even if I never put down another piece of carpet, it was a good feeling to learn how to do it.

My challenge to you this week is to try something new today. Look for a recipe that calls for a different way to mix ingredients. Sign up for a free class in continuing education. Learn how to use a new camera (or the old one…if you’re like me, you never finished reading that user manual, right?). Play a new game, or try a new sport. Try out a new app on your phone.

Whatever you attempt, think of it as an exercise in faith. You’re trusting that, sink or swim, you’ll learn something. Likewise, when you put your faith in Jesus Christ, it’s a day-to-day learning experience. Sometimes we fail miserably, but He is faithful to pick us back up and forgive us. And the best promises? He makes all things NEW. He makes us NEW creatures. And His mercies are NEW every morning.

Step out in faith today—learn something NEW in the power of Jesus Christ!

Thank You, Lord Jesus, for the privilege of learning new things. Thank You for giving us Your word in Scripture, opening our eyes to new possibilities every time we open our Bibles. Thank You for the newness of life every day with You! In Your powerful name, Amen.

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Enjoying the challenge of learning taekwondo from Grand Masters Scott and Ruthie!

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