Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
The instructor started the class by telling the students how their prior studies would lay the foundation for this first calculus course. He mentioned how geometry would play a role in these studies along with algebra I and algebra II. A shy student raised her hand to say that she had not taken geometry or any algebra courses. He told her that she would pick it up in time. Relying on this encouragement, she stayed in the course and gave it a try. It would not take long for her to realize that there would be no way for her to “pick up” this new mathematic discipline without the necessary foundational understanding. This was a knowledge that she would not be able to give to herself but that she would need to get from someone else. She needed another source to supply the understanding that this course would require but not provide.
We walk through this life first having a kind of understanding that we derive from ourselves, from our experiences and from the world. We try using that to navigate this life, but a problem arises. The issue is that there is a designer to this life who has a full knowledge of its intricacies. If we do not tap into that knowledge, we never see the whole picture. We cannot know the truth of this existence without gaining understanding from God. We see in part, but He sees in perfect completion. We know in part, but He knows in perfect completion. What He teaches us builds and builds. The process through which He takes us is one of stacking knowledge and understanding so that they increase within us as we walk with him. It is not about a moment of clarity but about a lifetime learning.
If we try to navigate this life using only our understanding, we will be at a severe disadvantage. There are things we can never hope to know or learn on our own, and some of these things are of eternal consequence. When we lean on God for his understanding then we have a chance. We can tap into his limitless source of knowledge so that things become clear to us. There is no other source for what we need to live this life successfully and abundantly. There is no other source for that which is necessary for us to have the hope of eternity with our Lord. Father, thank You for the perfect understanding You so graciously make available to those who seek to know You.