Learning

This past week, I have begun learning something new, and was reminded how much I enjoy the process! The ability to learn – and also to be satisfied while doing so – truly is a gift from the Lord.

However, as this verse indicates, learning requires personal effort and discipline. In order to make progress, we must commit time and energy to our efforts, so that the process of growth and change continues.

In my own life, I have decided to study three languages: I am brushing up my (admittedly rusty) Spanish, and am also taking on French and Italian. I’m using an online resource that makes the whole process quite enjoyable, and I’m learning to pace and discipline myself along the way, too.

What is tricky is when I make mistakes. I’m realizing I don’t like it when I mess up, and can start to resent the entire process if I’m not careful. However, I learn with each error – whether it is a misplaced accent or a misspelled word – and I am discovering that the specific lesson is intentionally repeated so that I have an opportunity to correct the previous mistake. Put another way, I am tested to verify that learning has taken place, and to reinforce this knowledge base with a lots of practice.

I believe that this is a metaphor for life, too. It seems to me that the Lord engages with us in much the same way; and while we get frustrated when the correction and discipline come inevitably come, these tools are essential for our continued spiritual and emotional development.

Learning something new is never easy, but it can be very rewarding, if we approach it with the right attitude, no? 📈

25 thoughts on “Learning

  1. Yes! As I age, it is sometimes difficult to think that I still have a lot to learn: as in, “Don’t I have this ‘wisdom’ thing down yet???” I am only as wise as much as I step aside and let God. He still teaches me; I still love learning (although, not the process so much, sometimes 😉).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wrote this long and thoughtful response to your comment, only to have the WordPress app crash on me! 😩

      I agree with you 100%, Kathy. We never reach the end of the journey where wisdom is concerned; relatedly, the process of growth and renewal can often be challenging and frustrating at times.

      Still, it’s worth it, no? I’d rather be growing with God rather than the alternative (stagnation), even if the experience can be tough at times!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hola, ¿cómo estás? Hehe, I’m learning Spanish. I’m using Duolingo and Memrise at the same time, and it’s going well. I relate to your struggles with misspelled words and accent marks. Such as, “¿Pero cómo?” I thought it meant “Dog I eat?” which is quite disturbing, but it meant “But how?” because dog has two r’s (perro), and how (cómo) has the accent mark while I eat (como) doesn’t. Anyway… I’m digressing… 😆

    That is so cool that you’re learning three languages at the same time! How do you keep up with all three at once? I’m learning Spanish and ASL (American Sign Language) at the same time and that’s hard enough. I admire your learning ability. 🙂

    “The ability to learn – and also to be satisfied while doing so – truly is a gift from the Lord.” Amen! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am using Duolingo, too! 🙂 I have not tried Memrise – do you recommend it?

      Duolingo is getting me with the French accents (and I’ve had a tough time with some Spanish sections, too!). I just make educated guesses with the Italian. 😉 But if we think Spanish is tough, can you imagine how hard wrenching it must be to try to learn English as a second language?

      I’ve always been interested in ASL! Are you also studying it online? If so, which program are you using?

      Learning three languages sounds kind of ridiculous, but because they’re all romance languages and share some of the same Latin roots, it’s not quite as impossible as it may sound. 💡

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I do recommend it, but I like Duolingo for different reasons. Memrise helps to memorize words and short phrases (at least so far) and Duolingo is better for understanding how the language works. I started using Memrise first and memorized enough words that it was easier for me to grasp how to use the words I already knew with Duolingo. 🙂

        Yikes. I read a little once about the struggles of teaching English – I forgot where. But I remember them trying to explain why mouse is singular and mice is plural and then trying to explain why house is singular and the plural isn’t hice… the English language is actually quite weird. X)

        So far, I haven’t tried the voice part of Duolingo – I usually click the “can’t talk now” button. I may regret that someday…

        Memrise has quite a few ASL courses – for ASL1, this is my favorite course so far: https://www.memrise.com/course/302204/american-sign-language-1/

        Oh, I see! Yes, I imagine that would make it a bit easier. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thank you, my friend! 😊 I have made a note to check in on the Memrise ASL classes – I appreciate the tip! I may check it out more carefully this week.

        And yes, learning English must be incredibly challenging to a non-native speaker! Our language has very flexible rules in some areas, rigid ones in others, and way too many exceptions for our own good. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      3. No problem, glad I could help. 🙂 It’s really fun; they have more than one ASL course there. (I believe they are all user made.) I’m testing them out, haha.

        Haha, yes, exactly! 😊

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      4. Me too! I’ve tried practicing with a friend who also knows Spanish and she was trying to teach me how to pronounce the ñ and roll the r’s. The ñ’s were more successful than the r’s. 😅

        Liked by 1 person

      5. 😂 I am chuckling. The Rs take work and a lot of practice!

        I am still struggling with a lot of the French pronunciation. Between how the words look and how they sound, I am truly at sea sometimes!

        BTW havd you seen the advertisement for the Duolingo basic Spanish podcast? I’m thinking of checking it out.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. 😀 They sure do! I cringe so hard when I try. 😂

        Oh my, I can only imagine. 😂

        Yes, it’s neat. 🙂 I hope you enjoy it! They also just came out with Duolingo Stories: https://stories.duolingo.com/ I prefer it because I’m still not good at listening; I’m better at reading, and this one allows me to engage in the story. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      7. Thank you for the Duolingo resource! I just bookmarked it. Thanks for the tip!

        We definitely have to compare notes on our Spanish lessons for sure. I’m glad to know that someone else is going through a similar experience! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      8. No problem! 😀 Also, I don’t want to overload you on resources, but in case you haven’t heard of it: https://tinycards.duolingo.com/ Tiny Cards – it’s flash cards that go with the Duolingo website (and Duolingo stories) to help memorize the words. They also have a sign language course…

        Yes! 🙂 I’m also glad – it’s helpful to talk through it to someone who understands. 🙂 Thanks for discussing this with me, it’s been a lot of fun! ❤

        Liked by 1 person

      9. I have seen the TinyCards listed on DuoLingo’s site. I thought they cost something ($), so I’ve not yet looked into them. Are they any good?

        Yay! Did not know Duo had an ASL course! I may need to add that one to my other language courses, too.

        Is there a way to turn off the “type what you hear” feature on Duo, BTW? I am finding it nearly impossible with my French course – everything nearly sounds the same! 😳

        Liked by 1 person

      10. Oh no, it’s free. 🙂 It can be tedious sometimes, like it wants “by / for” for “por” and “for” for para, if I remember correctly. And it won’t accept just “for” for “por” even though that’s mostly correct. Anyway, it’s a good resource but I confuse the ones where I have to add slashes like that.

        Sadly, it’s only the alphabet, but it’s a great start. 😀 https://tinycards.duolingo.com/decks/27hjpLh/sign-language-alphabet

        Yikes! If there is, I haven’t found it yet. If I find a way, I’ll let you know! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      11. I will try the TinyCards, but may give them a go for French (and ASL!) rather than Spanish, as it’s still not terribly intuitive for me yet.

        BTW I sent a few correction requests to DuoLingo (suggesting that a few of my “wrong” answers were actually correct), and I found out that two of them had been accepted as correct responses! I like that the team there is responsive to feedback. 😀

        Voy a estudiar espanol en DuoLingo ahora – hasta luego, mi amiga! 🙂

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