Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Tuesday, October 10, 2023

Opus 2023-245: Ignorance Is a Choice

In a recent discussion the pastor of a local church was praised for his preaching style.  The view was that he made things very clear, used a power-point presentation with charts, graphs and maps.  That is all good.  I have no problem with those things.  They are tools.  As long as the truth is being presented, they are useful.  This is not a comment about him.

This is about the current pendulum swing that seems to put all the responsibility on the teacher for a student to learn.  I was a public school teacher and there were a lot of guilt trips about how students were failing because of some inadequacy in the teacher.  Of course this was presented after the powers had made sure that the classes were so mixed in ability levels that no one approach would reach them all.  Teachers were supposed to be master technicians who could present the lesson in ten different ways at the same time and give individual reinforcement in a class of 36 students.  Keep in mind that half of them could not read or do simple math.  Observe the generous leaven of students who needed to be in special ed classes or had major behavior problems.  

Certain teachers were held up as masters of the craft.  Usually that meant one of two scenarios.  The first is that they were not getting the results that were claimed.  When a math teacher teaches using the x and y axis of a graph as an art project instead of showing actual data he was honored as a presenter in a faculty meeting.  No one seemed to catch on that the attractive boards being hailed did not show any data, just colors and designs.  The second scenario is that the class was much more homogenous than you were led to believe.  We had a history teacher who was praised for his innovative approach and the way he could get results from students.  What was not included in the report was that the class of eighth graders being held up as a model were all also enrolled in the advanced geometry class, putting them a couple of years ahead of the curve.

I will concede that some teachers seem to have a magic but it is a magic that is not available to the rest of us.  When I first started playing golf I used to read articles by Tiger Woods.  I could define every word he used.  I could not duplicate his results.  Usually the great stories about teaching involve one student in a class who connected or a group of students who were driven to learn.  These are the kind of students who could be taught to read, released to the library and would emerge educated.  

Teachers can be good or bad.  The student committed to learning can make progress under either type.  Learning is really up to the learner.  I have waxed large on schools but the same thing applies to you if you are attending a worship service.  The pastor didn’t speak to you?  Did you bring your Bible?  Did you open it?  Did you read over the text he selected?  Did you ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you and were you listening?

No pastor or teacher can do those things for you.

homo unius libri

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Comments are welcome. Feel free to agree or disagree but keep it clean, courteous and short. I heard some shorthand on a podcast: TLDR, Too long, didn't read.