“Learn it. Love it. Live it.” I heard this at Deer Creek Camp (DCC) this past summer while working there. The idea behind each part of this phrase has altered how I approach a lot of things. It’s changed me, for the better.
What does it mean to “learn it, love it and live it”?
When we learn something, we get it into our heads. We have a general knowledge of the subject, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that the knowledge will stick. Think back to long division: Remember when you had to know it really well because if you didn’t you wouldn’t do well on the test? Now, with calculators, I bet most people only vaguely remember the correct process for long division, and even then it probably takes a while to execute. See, in elementary school we learned how to do long division, but we did not put this knowledge into the deepest banks of our memories. When we apply this analogy to Christianity it might look like someone knowing all the right answers, but when questioned further, they have no idea how to respond. This is where the “love it” part comes into play.
There are twelve inches between your brain and heart. When we are challenged to take the knowledge we have and move it down to our heart, we go on a journey. This is the hardest journey you will ever partake in. To truly transport truths from your head to your heart is painful. To know something, and to actually believe it, that’s another story completely. However, if one decides to do this it will be well worth it. To know of Christ and the sacrifice He gave on the cross, to have heard the stories and sung the songs of His love and redemption, that’s one thing. But to actually believe this, to actually “hunger and thirst” (Mt. 5:6) after Christ’s righteousness? Holding on to nothing, completely surrendering yourself because you realize the amount of love that went into His sacrifice for you someone who -messes up, makes bad choices throughout the entire day, lies, cheats, thinks bad things- to actually see and understand that this is what Christ did for us on the cross? Wow, that’ll give you goose bumps. Yes, it will be the hardest journey you ever take, getting your head knowledge to become heart knowledge, but take it from me, someone who fought Christ with everything she had for two years, it’s worth it.
After you have made this glorious journey, you can, and should, live out these truths and wisdom you’ve gained. We are not called to a life of solitude when it comes to our faith, no, we are called to a “private journey with a public walk”. (Another phrase I got from DCC) What this means is that our entire life is a journey: you and Christ are on a “private journey”, He is romancing your heart and molding you into the person He desires you to be. However, when we live out our daily lives, we are called to a “public walk”. We should not keep the Gospel to ourselves, doing nothing to further the kingdom. In fact, Jesus addresses the idea of doing nothing with what we’re given in the parable of the talents. The master gave three of his servants a part of his possession, one five talents, one two talents and the other one talent, all according to his ability. Both the servant who received 5 and 2 talents went out and doubled it, however, the servant who received one talent went out into a field and buried the talent. The master was pleased with the first two servants but with the third he was very upset with because he did nothing with what he had been given. (Mt. 25:14-30) When we have something of value, we need to use it. We should not be afraid or timid to act with what we have, especially if we have already learned the truths. “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
Being a Christian is not simply a prayer that we pray on the alter in order to gain “fire insurance.” Following Christ is a lifestyle; it’s a constant act of worship to the King. When we are living everyday constantly seeking out Christ and His Word, then we are going to grow in our faith and the Holy Spirit will reveal more and more wisdom and truth to our hearts. “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9