August 2010


A second lesson I learned in High School that had little to do with classrooms or books was that mature people know when to shut up!

Immature people feel they must respond to everything, to always have the last word.   They believe that no conversation is complete until they have added their “two cents.”

Mature people understand that it is often better to be quiet and let something pass.  The mature understand that arguing with idiots is a waste of breath. 

Those who are quiet are usually those who are thought of as wise.  It is the blabbermouths who are believed to be foolish.

The wise consider their thoughts and measure their words carefully while the foolish blurt everything out without thought.

It is the immature that are constantly apologizing for their words or trying to remember their web of lies.

The immature feel a need to be heard while the wise are confident in who they are and have no need for approval of others.

The immature lie to impress others while the mature are truthful.  The immature allow their tongue to guide their life while the mature remain on the path of character and resolve.

The immature are empowered by what they think they know about others and use that knowledge to gain acceptance.

The immature boast about themselves and their abilities while the mature would rather act than talk.

James 1:26-27 “If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.  Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”  ESV

1 Peter 3:10-12 “Whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit; let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it.  For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer.  But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”ESV

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One of the greatest lessons I learned in High School was not learned from a book or from a specific teacher; it was a lesson learned by life.  This lesson is one we all need to learn at one time or another, the earlier the better.

It is the lesson that life is not about me. 

Middle school students usually are self focused and selfish.  They want to be “different” from the rest and try to do that by expressing their individualism.  No one can tell them how they should dress, how their hair should be cut or what they should or should not say.  Their life is all about them.  They want what they want, they want it their way and they rebel against any authority that tries to change them to conform to a “norm.”

6th and 7th graders are so full of themselves they think they are smarter than their parents, their teachers and anyone else they happen to come across.

They have left behind the days of elementary school and are eager to “be all they can be” with the newfound freedom of Middle School.

They push their parents’ away, rebel against authority and work so hard to be “non conformist” that they all begin to conform to one another.  This is where Cliques start.  This is where the strange phenomena of the middle schoolers acting more childish than the elementary schooler begins.

Maturity brings awakening.  An awakening that reveals to us that life is not all about us.  We learn what a mature relationship is and what commitment really means.  It is the lesson that leads me to understand that life is less about me getting my way more about relationships, character and morality.

We learn to care about others and to put the needs of others above our own needs.

We learn about our responsibility as boyfriend/girlfriend, as students, as members of a family, as members of a team or as members of society.

We come to understand that life is not about us getting to wear a certain style or have our hair a certain length; we learn that leadership is about serving and love is about commitment.

Maturity changes our focus from us to others.

Look around your schools; it is the immature that still act like middle schoolers and it is the mature who are considered to be young men and women – adults.

Titus 3:14 “Our people must learn to do good by meeting the urgent needs of others; then they will not be unproductive.”    And Matthew 7:12a “Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you”  are two scriptures that really have to do with our maturity as people and as believers.