When I taught German to adults, I felt rather daunted when I discovered that a member of the class was a man who held a high position in Local Government. He quickly put me at ease by saying to me:’I know I’m the boss at work but in this class, you are the boss. You are the teacher and I am the learner.OK?’ Yes, it was very much OK with me.
I have expertise in some areas, but in many areas I a have no expertise whatsoever, and I am dependent on others who do have expertise in those areas.
I started to make a list of people whose expertise I rely on:
electricians, plumbers, car mechanics
whoever those people are who work out how much saturated fat is in packaged food
people who do drug trials and write those lists of side effects we might have when we take our medication
I’m sure that if I sit here long enough, I could add many more people to this list, but I will leave it there for now, with the exception of one more area of expertise – theology.
I am not a theologian.
I believe that God is the best ‘special needs teacher’ ever and that he equips us to be the people he created us to be. For me, one of the most significant things about being a Christian is humility.We don’t know everything and we need to have the humility to say, ‘I don’t know, but I know a man (or a woman) who does.’
I am not a theologian – but I am so thankful for those who are.
I got really frustrated when I couldn’t converse with highly intelligent atheists who sang the praises of Richard Dawkins to me. I’m not a scientist – how could I talk with any authority about Richard Dawkins and ‘The God Delusion?’ I couldn’t. I am happy to say that our Rector lent me a copy of ‘The Dawkins Delusion’ by Alister McGrath. I still can’t ‘talk theology’ – but I can recommend the book.
I am also thankful for many theologians on Twitter and hope to write about that, too, in the future, after I’ve pondered a bit more and collected my thoughts.
‘There are many kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord.’
1 Corinthians 12:4,5