Friday, August 14, 2009

Life Long Learning

I suppose I should introduce myself as well. I can be a lemming in this case, it's alright.

I am Amy Grondahl (Tricia put down that I am Amy H, but not really, it is Amy G). I am 5'7" with dark brown curly hair, bright changing eyes, and a shy dimple when I smile. I like anything that has to do with the mountains, dancing, reading, lots and lots of music, laughter, my hubby (who generally equates laughter) and nearly two year old son, long walks on the beach and ice cream.

I have been married for two and a half years and along with half of the rest of the population, I am expecting a great bundle of joy to join our family in a few short months. I have the wonderful blessing to stay home with my son every day and learn from him. I love reading the scriptures and learning more about the gospel... which leads me to my topic today.

I went visiting teaching this morning. I loved the message. For those of you who haven't read it yet, let me just fill you in, and for those who have read it, just humor me and my epiphany.

The message was about lifelong education and learning. We all know that education is essential, and that we should get a good education. We know that "just in case something happens and we have to rely on it to support our families." but the message really gave some wonderful insight as to why, and even expanded a bit on it. It said

“Your talents will expand as you study and learn. You will be able to better assist your families in their learning, and you will have peace of mind in knowing that you have prepared yourself for the eventualities that you may encounter in life”

I love that by continual learning my talents can expand. I don't claim to be a very talented person, and would love for the chance and opportunity to have my few talents expand, as would I love to discover new talents. Being able to be prepared for the future also would really give me much comfort. There are so many things that are up in the air right now. It would be the most wonderful blessing in the world to always be prepared.

President Eyering said

“We will have to make some hard choices of how we use our time. … But remember, you are interested in education, not just for mortal life but for eternal life. When you see that reality clearly with spiritual sight, you will put spiritual learning first and yet not slight the secular learning. …

“… And since what we will need to know is hard to discern, we need the help of heaven to know which of the myriad things we could study we would most wisely learn. It also means that we cannot waste time entertaining ourselves when we have the chance to read or to listen to whatever will help us learn what is true and useful. Insatiable curiosity will be our hallmark” (“Education for Real Life,” Ensign, Oct. 2002, 18, 19).

My little brother is currently looking for a profession. He is in school and frustrated with what he should go into, knowing that it will affect the rest of his life. I love that we are told we can have the help of heaven to know what we need to study.

I am a huge time waster. I love to read books for entertainment. I have a hard time reading books for knowledge sake when I could be reading fairy tales. That is just how I am. I obviously have need to repent. I need to focus more on things that will help me in life.

It seems a lot of times we as women have a lot of demands placed upon our shoulders. We listen too much to what the world says about who we should be, and what we should do. We have the wonderful blessing of inquisitive minds. For those of us with children we can learn a lot from watching their curiosity. Everything fascinates them, and they are wanting to learn everything they can. If we do that, we can have an advantage in the life to come.

“My dear sisters, don’t ever sell yourself short as a woman or as a mother. … Do not let the world define, denigrate, or limit your feelings of lifelong learning and the values of motherhood in the home—both here mortally and in the eternal learning and benefits you give to your children and to your companion.

“Lifelong learning is essential to the vitality of the human mind, body, and soul. It enhances self-worth and self-actuation. Lifelong learning is invigorating mentally and is a great defense against aging, depression, and self-doubt” (“The Journey of Lifelong Learning,” in Brigham Young University 2008–2009 Speeches [2009], 2, 8–9).

After reading that I had a realization. I have never heard of one of the bretheren with the common complaints of old age. They are very alert and attentive and mentally active up to the last. No alzheimers or dementia for them. If we constantly study and seek after learning, we too can have those blessings.
As I was reading through the message I learned something. I learned that when we put the spiritual aspect of learning first (studying the scriptures, prayer, listening to our leaders and studying their words) our secular learning comes much easier for us.

I realy needed to learn this, and I hope it helped someone else. A life long learning is very important to our eternal salvation and the more we learn here, the better off we will be in the future.

6 comments:

  1. I like what you said about learning. It is important. I don't know if you meant to say that general authorities/apostles don't suffer physical ailments or just that their minds are more sharp. But I know of several who have had health problems.
    Pres. Faust had a serious condition, which I can't remember if it was one of the conditions you listed but I know it did have to do with mental functioning. Pres. Monson suffers with diabetes and Pres. Packer has experienced problems relating to declining health as well.
    I don't think that they are immune to humanity, but yeah they study and work instead of sitting down/waiting to die like many elderly people do.

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  2. Oh, and I realized that I had originally put "Amy H." but I changed it a while ago. Just so you know.

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  3. I meant that I have never heard of one of the Brethren with mind ailments. I know they are subject to human frailties just like the rest of us, but because they keep their minds learning, their minds are active and sharp to the end, not clouded with dementia. I am sorry if I wasn't clear on that.

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  4. Oh, it was probably just me. I'm having a cloudy day.

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  6. One of the best classes I took at school had to do with how we (as elementary school teachers) combine our spiritual learning and growth with what secular things we taught our students.

    I think when we feed our soul often, our mind is able to retain more. One of my favorite ever talks is the one you quoted from Pres. Eyring.

    I love having the reminder to always keep learning!

    Thanks Amy!

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