We can spend a lot of time being occupied at the extremities of our life, acting as a spectator rather than being deeply engaged and part of the main game. In our learning across all areas of life we can be physically present but not fully engaged. A key part of engagement involves taking responsibility for our own learning and focusing on what we can do to improve our learning rather than what others should do. A fully engaged mind is open to opportunity, is curious and focused on finding better ways forward.
The difference between being a spectator and being engaged is well exemplified by considering the different behaviours of the crowd and players at a major football or netball final. The crowd can be rowdy, at times appreciative and encouraging and at other times critical, but it is the players being deeply engaged in the game that make the difference. In our lives we too have ‘crowds’, but if we are to make a difference we have to get in and play the game to the best of our ability. We have to be fully in the game, reading the nuances and learning from and with others who are working towards the same goal. God is with us on the field. His guidance for us isn’t about acting as a spectator. It is about being fully present and acting, making the most of our talents for the betterment of others.