Are you a good learner? Life is about growing--physically, mentally, and spiritually--but in order to grow properly, one needs to be a good learner.

The Word of God provides us with valuable tips and principles that will help us be better learners in life. Here are some principles I've gathered from the Bible to assist us in our learning experience:

1. Fear Yahweh God, for it's the beginning of wisdom:
When you reverence and love your Creator, you will come to love His creations, for "whoever loves the Father also loves the child who is born of him." (1 John 5:1, WEB) Love for His creations will then open up your heart to learn from them valuable lessons of life. Love for Yahweh is the channel that opens all paths to wisdom, as the "fear of Yahweh is the beginning of wisdom. The knowledge of the Holy One is understanding." (Proverbs 9:10, WEB)

2. Seize every opportunity to learn:
Grab every chance you have to learn a new subject or take up a new hobby, for if you wait for the "perfect moment" or the "right opportunity," it may never come, and consequently your dreams will remain unfulfilled, as "farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant. If they watch every cloud, they never harvest." (Ecclesiastes 11:4, NLT) Life is full of surprises and uncertainties; it is foolish to wait for the "perfect condition" to go after your dreams. So if you want to embark on a new learning experience and you have the means to, then do it today. Do not wait.

3. Be receptive to constructive criticism:
If you love correction, you love knowledge (Proverbs 12:1). To receive and learn from constructive criticism is wisdom, for you'll gain better understanding: "The ear that listens to reproof lives, and will be at home among the wise. He who refuses correction despises his own soul, but he who listens to reproof gets understanding." (Proverbs 15:31-32, WEB) Likewise, correct others for their own benefit, and the wise will be wiser and the learned more knowledgeable. In this, you shall be a good teacher, as "better is open rebuke than hidden love." (Proverbs 27:5, WEB)

4. Take lessons from nature:
From God's beautiful creations, learn to be: diligent in storing up for the future as the ants, driven and hardworking as the bees, and devoted as a pair of loons. Diligence, a driven will, and devotion are the keys to a good learner, as "in all hard work there is profit." (Proverbs 14:23, WEB) Be devoted to working hard in finding, soaking and storing up wisdom and knowledge for future use, for whoever finds wisdom "finds life, and will obtain favor from Yahweh." (Proverbs 8:35, WEB)

5. Be swift to hear, slow to speak (James 1:19):
Among the first steps in attaining wisdom is to listen. To soak up knowledge, carefully listen to instruction with attentive ears without interrupting, for "whoever despises instruction will pay for it, but he who respects a command will be rewarded." (Proverbs 13:13, WEB)

6. Embrace humility to accept and absorb knowledge:
Pride holds us back from listening to the instruction, advice, and suggestions of others. Only humility will allow you to receive instruction and consider suggestions with an open heart, and that will lead you to wisdom, for the "way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but he who is wise listens to counsel." (Proverbs 12:15, WEB)

7. Realize and acknowledge the value of knowledge and understanding:
If you understand and acknowledge that "wisdom is better than rubies" and "all the things that may be desired can't be compared to it," then you will be motivated and empowered to seek after "instruction rather than silver; knowledge rather than choice gold." (Proverbs 8:10-11, WEB)

8. Learn from your mistakes:
Failure is not the result of our mistakes; failure is the outcome when we have failed to learn from our mistakes. To improve your walk in life, learn from your past to see how you can do things differently to attain better results. If you fail to learn from your mistakes, you will be stuck in the same place without any progress, like "a washed pig [returning] to the mud." (2 Peter 2:22, NLT)

9. Learn from the aged:
There is wisdom and insight in age and experience, as the Chinese proverb says, "The older the ginger, the hotter the spice." Do not hesitate to seek the counsel of your parent, grandparent, or a trusted older friend, for their experience in life may provide you with the insights you need. Remember, "where there is no counsel, plans fail; but in a multitude of counselors they are established." (Proverbs 15:22, WEB)

10. Apply your knowledge to your life:
What good is your knowledge if you do not apply it to your life? Application of your knowledge is "learning through experience." Obtaining knowledge is merely the beginning of learning, not something at which you should stop. Rather, go for the fruit of learning: lifelong application of knowledge. For instance, he who merely hears the Word of God but is not a doer of it is "like a man looking at his natural face in a mirror; for he sees himself, and goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of freedom, and continues, not being a hearer who forgets, but a doer of the work, this man will be blessed in what he does." (James 1:23-25, WEB)

11. Be prudent and careful not to trust everything you hear or see:
As the Bible says, "A simple man believes everything, but the prudent man carefully considers his ways," be careful to double check everything you hear to make sure it is the truth or factual before believing it and spreading it to others (Proverbs 14:15, WEB).

12. Learn from the wise
Choose your company with care. Befriend those who are wise and learned to gain their understanding, as "one who walks with wise men grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm." (Proverbs 13:20, WEB)

13. Last but not least, follow the guidance of your Maker:
Who has more knowledge on how a product should be used, the product itself, the user of the product, or the maker of the product? Naturally, the maker. Since Yahweh is our Creator, wouldn't you agree that He knows what is best for us? Therefore, "trust in Yahweh with all your heart, and don't lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Don't be wise in your own eyes." (Proverbs 3:5-7, WEB)

When we apply these principles and tips to our lives, we will grow and prosper "like a tree planted by the streams of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also does not wither." (Psalm 1:3)

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Shirley Cheng (b. 1983) is a blind and physically disabled award-winning author with twenty-seven book awards, proclaimer of Yahweh God's good news of salvation through Jesus Christ, Bible teacher, founder of Ministry, summa cum laude graduate with Doctor of Divinity, motivational speaker, poet; and author of nine books (including "Do You Love Jehovah?"), contributor to over twenty-five, and an editor of one. Shirley has had severe juvenile rheumatoid arthritis since infancy. Owing to years of hospitalization, she received no education until age eleven. Back then, she knew only her ABCs and very simple English; other than that, her book knowledge was non-existent. However, after only about 180 days of special education in elementary school, she mastered grade level and entered a regular sixth grade class in middle school. Unfortunately, Shirley lost her eyesight at the age of seventeen. After a successful eye surgery, she hopes to earn multiple science doctorates from Harvard University.

Do you have questions about the Bible? Something you don't understand? Do you need a bit of guidance in developing a relationship with Yahweh? Then Shirley would like to help you! Please contact her via her site at and she would be more than glad to do her best to answer your questions! Never hesitate to ask questions, for no question about the Bible is ever too small or stupid.