C.S. Lewis had it right… “Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.”
I am so grateful that we get to learn through our experiences, it is the silver lining to so many of mistakes. Now I get to call them “learning experiences”.
Why is it that sometimes we have to learn things through experience? It’s like the kid compelled to stick metal objects in the light socket or to high-five the stove top. Sometimes I only learn my lesson after I feel the smart of that electric shock, and a minor burn on my hand stands as a warning against repeat offenses.
I am encouraged however, to read of learning experiences of others, especially those of the disciples. I am not alone in my learning experiences, and one of my favorite relatable-stories is Jesus calming the storm.
Mark 4: 35-41
That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.
He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”
I find this scene so encouraging because I can relate to the disciples. Faced with difficult and uncertain circumstances, they are given over to fear even though Jesus is so calm that he is sleeping below deck. After witnessing him calm the storm, I imagine this scenario to be a permanent memory; a brutal learning experience that is forever etched in the disciples minds. Why be so afraid? Why have such limited faith? The Lord is control of all and that is a lesson worth learning.