Mar. 7: How to Sharpen a Student

In his monthly Apple Seeds newsletter, Father Brian Cavanaugh recalled asking a college student how her midterm exams went.  She replied they weren’t too tough, except for one professor whose tests are “impossible to pass.”

Father Cavanaugh asked, “Do you learn more studying for her tests, or from the teachers that are not so difficult?”

The student admitted she had learned more with the difficult professor, but still wondered why she had to be so tough.  Father Cavanaugh then asked if she thinks the best way to sharpen a knife is with a stone or a towel.

“You can’t sharpen a knife on a towel!” the student said.

“Exactly!” he answered.  “A knife can only be sharpened on a hard surface so that it will be sharp enough to fulfill its purpose and cut what needs cutting.  Students and children, too, cannot be sharpened on soft surfaces.  They are sharpened on the hard surfaces of teachers and parents, so that they’ll be sharp enough to cut it in life and fulfill their life’s purpose.”

Those who are wise shall shine.  (Daniel 12:3)

Allow the challenges I face to make me better, not bitter, Lord.

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