Before I had kids, I was an elementary school teacher for a few years. One of the most important things about teaching is knowing how to identify “teachable moments”. Lesson plans are important, but you have to be able to recognize when a child is ready and willing to learn. Sometimes you can create these moments, but often they just happen. The most rewarding days were usually the ones that we strayed from the lesson plans because the kids were passionate about a project or some tangent we found ourselves on. That’s when the real learning takes place. If the kids are bored, tired, or grumpy they aren’t going to be very open to new lessons.
Chapter 9 of Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World is about Martha’s heart and her willingness to learn. She could have become defensive when Jesus corrected her, but Weaver shows evidence that Martha learned from this experience. I believe that Jesus can identify teachable moments with us, but I also believe that we have a responsibility, as adults, to be prepared for his teachings regardless of our moods. I am definitely a very stubborn person and do not enjoy being corrected. I probably would have been somewhat annoyed with Jesus had I been in Martha’s position. The trick is to move beyond the initial bruised ego. Martha was able to humble herself and grow in her relationship with him. She had a teachable heart.
Weaver challenges us to do three things in this chapter: listen, act on what you hear, and respond to discipline. As a mother I can relate! This is what I want from my children. It is also what God wants from us.
There is so much to this chapter about how to listen to God’s voice and how to receive his corrections. I love the words that Weaver uses because she relates God as a father. Any parent can relate to how frustrated he must be with his children sometimes. This chapter reminds me of the saying, “I hope you have a child just like you.” I wonder if this is part of God’s design… or maybe his sense of humor. Raising my own children is definitely a good lesson on how God must feel about me – the good and the bad!