Education. This is a word and term that is bandied about often, sometimes carelessly and recklessly, sometimes in ignorance, but mostly for noble causes. After all, education generally is a noble cause since it defines the transference of knowledge from one generation to the next; this in turn begs us to appreciate noble aspirations, such as legacy.
But really, education begins and ends in the home, and has less to do with formal schooling than one may think! It seems to be a popular notion that education starts the day we are enrolled for Grade 1 (or Grade R or something similar) and then continues through to Grade 12; after that further education may or may not happen at college, technicon or university level, after which we go into our respective fields... educated and qualified. Nothing could be further from the truth.
As I said, education starts at home (or at the hospital) the day we are born. I believe we come into the world fully and perfectly formed as the person we are supposed to be. The road we need to walk (through education) from birth to death is the process of bringing out that perfect being, and that whole person. For most of us, the attainment of reaching that perfection while on earth is probably not feasible, however, it shouldn’t stop us from trying. I also think that eternity (if we were to view eternity in terms of time - which it isn't!) is simply the continuance of this road. Until all eternity, I believe we will be involved in this educational process - discovering who and what we are in the fullness of God.
Now if this is my belief, then I've also set myself up for quite a task regarding my own children, to those for whom I am either a biological or spiritual father. (I use the word 'father' in the broadest sense when referring to my relationship with people with no biological connection). In truth, we all are constantly involved in this dual role - the role of educator and in the place of being educated. By the way, 'being educated’ is not a destination, but rather a waypoint! Understanding the gravity of my responsibility I can no longer point a finger and make statements such as, "Yes, but the education system is this-or-that," when talking about the failings of our society. No, I must make up my mind that I am here to teach and learn all at the same time.
Understanding this responsibility is one thing, but it also implies that we need a measuring tool outside of ourselves that is bigger and better, further and more educated/informed, to guide us in the process. Fortunately, there is the Absolute against which we can measure anything from our achievement to our progress and everything in between. The Absolute, is of course, none other than the Creator, who conceived our shape and being in the first place.
So, our road of educational discovery is to find out more about the Creator; this will allow us to get to grips with who we are supposed to be, and allow us the grace to help every other person, who by necessity is hugely different than us. We are in this journey and adventure together, let us make the best of it and enjoy the ride.