The Struggle of Distance Learning

| 14 September 2020

This devotional is brought to you by distraction … but not just any old distraction, it is the distraction of trying to facilitate Distance Learning while working from home. In other words, pull out your hair distraction! I am writing this on one of the two mornings a week that I am responsible for helping my three kids login to their software, make sure the technology is working, get them on the appropriate Zoom calls, make sure that they are paying attention, help them troubleshoot problems, answer their questions and then try to squeeze in time to do my own work. This is not fun. All I know is that I have never had more respect for teachers in my life. Their work during these times is nothing short of heroic! Distance learning is difficult.

But the truth is that we are all distance learners. We can thank the Lord that we didn’t have to “go to school” and learn the way that kids are right now, but in actuality, much of the learning that we have done in the arena of faith has been distance learning. If you have learned to imitate Jesus, if you have learned to listen to the Holy Spirit, if you have learned the love of the Father, you have learned it through distance learning. It is not a distance of space (as God is always with us as our church’s name constantly reminds us), but a distance of dimension and realm… it’s a distance of learning from one kingdom to another. But God’s kingdom is penetrating ours in such a way that we can actually learn from and grow into and live our lives more and more in His kingdom instead of our own. This is why Jesus prayed to the Father, “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matt 6:10)

Heaven is the kingdom where God’s will is already being done. Earth is the kingdom that has been controlled by our own desires and rebellion for long enough. Jesus is saying that it is time for earth to look a little more like heaven … for heaven’s kingdom to invade the kingdom of earth so that this can become another realm where God’s will is done. 

But the fact is that this is a long term homework assignment. It isn’t something that we can accomplish on our own, but will ultimately take Jesus coming again and making everything new. In the meantime, we have to keep up the hard work of distance learning. We have to remember that we are people with feet in two kingdoms, but let’s always be people who put as much weight as possible into the kingdom of heaven.

Josh Rose
Pastor of Adult Ministries