“Do you see a person who is wise in his own eyes?
There is more hope for a fool than for him.” (Prov. 26:12)
After eleven verses of proverbs describing the bad state of a fool, verse 12 comes as a punchline: A person who is unteachable is worse than that fool. Thus, in some cases, a fool may be reclaimable! But what about the unteachable person who won’t listen? It’s a hopeless case!
The “arrived” mindset is dangerous with God. When we close our ears, when we think we know it all, when we consider ourselves as experts – we are in a scary place. We should consider the words of the Apostle Paul:
“Not that I have already reached the goal or am already perfect, but I make every effort to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 3:12)
Paul is saying this: When I have Jesus, as long as I have breath, I cannot consider myself perfect– I have room to grow! I cannot be wise in my own eyes. I must be teachable. Because Jesus has taken hold of me, a sinner, in love.
Are there areas in your life that you feel like you have arrived or feel wise? How can we shift our minds to be more teachable like Paul? He answers this in verse 13:
“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead” (Phil. 3:13)
Paul does not consider that he has “arrived.” What he does is be forgetful. His forgetfulness makes him to reach ahead to Christ. This does not mean he dismisses the Apostle’s Creed and historic Christianity. It means forgetting what is behind and forgoing your failures. This means your sins are past, behind you, gone!
Covered by the blood of the Lamb and forgiven, you can look forward to Jesus now and make every effort to pursue Him as your prize. That is the teachable mindset: Realizing you need more of Jesus now, and you can pursue Him because He has grabbed ahold of you.