Author Ava Pennington
Author Ava Pennington
Are You a Student - blackboard

Are You a Student?


When we hear the word student, we naturally think of children in school. And the opposite of a student is often thought to be a teacher.

But is that accurate? Because the best teachers I’ve known never stopped learning. They never stopped being students.

I wonder if the true opposite of a student is a know-it-all. Someone who doesn’t think he or she has anything more to learn on a given subject. Someone who, as they say, “has arrived.”

In episode six of The Chosen’s first season, the character of Nicodemus tells his protégé, “We are still students . . . All of us. Our understanding will never be complete.”

Perhaps the most dangerous area to be the opposite of a student is in the area of God and His Word. In this earthly life, can we ever arrive at a time when we know everything there is to know about God’s nature? Will we ever understand why He allows some of the things He does? Approaching the character and ways of God with anything less than humility is asking for trouble.

Someone once said, “All Scripture is equally true, but not all Scripture is equally clear.” Yet I confess, I’ve been guilty of speaking with authority on subjects of which I’ve only begun to scratch the surface. I can relate to blogger Stephen De La Vega when he wrote, “I imagine someday after I see Jesus face-to-face, that I will look back at all I have written in His name and recognize much that I misunderstood. May we teach, lead, and encourage others with humility, because we don’t understand all of God’s Word and His ways.”

As we speak and teach about God and His Word, may we—may I—maintain the apostle Paul’s burst of praise in Romans 11:33-36 as our foundation:

“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! ‘For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor? Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?’ For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.”


(This is eighth in a series of blog posts inspired by The Chosen, a multi-season series about the life of Jesus and His followers. Each post will highlight a quote sourced from Season 1. Previous posts include:

  1. Chosen Reflections: I Have Called You By Name
  2. Chosen Reflections: The Difference
  3. Chosen Reflections: Provision
  4. Chosen Reflections: Purpose
  5. Chosen Reflections: Fishers of Men 
  6. Chosen Reflections: Do Whatever He Tells You
  7. Chosen Reflections: Follow the Leader


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  1. Rayma Zugel

    I am, and always hope to be as long as God leaves me here.

  2. Nancy E. Head

    What a great message. We never stop learning. Sometimes I’m humbled at having learned something so late in life. God has much to teach us–especially when we think we’ve got it all already.

  3. Melissa Henderson

    I am always learning wonderful lessons from God. I pray I will always listen and obey His will.

  4. Melinda Viergever Inman

    Ava, this is so true, no matter how much we study and how deep we go! The Lord’s wisdom and knowledge is so high above our ability to comprehend, that I feel as if we barely scratch the surface, for there is always more depth to plumb, no matter our efforts. The Holy Spirit is the Author, and he is above and far beyond us!

  5. Yvonne Morgan

    I love to learn and I pray to always have a willing heart. Thanks for sharing

  6. Jessica Brodie

    I love Paul’s enthusiasm! May we always be on fire for Jesus.

  7. Karen Friday

    Ava, pray to take that passage in Roman 11 to heart. The Lord has been “teaching” me over the last several years to be a life-long student with Him and not just in life itself. Yet, as you so wonderfully noted, there is much to learn and some beyond our reach.

  8. Yvonne Anzolone

    My mother always used to tell me, “Yvonne Darling, we live and we learn.” Thanks to her and my dad, I grew up believing learning was an integral part of life. It can be so much fun to continue to learn and discover the wonders of God and His Word.

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