Sometimes, perhaps most of the time, the best learning happens outside of the classroom. On a recent trip to Mongolia we had the privilege of teaching the Gospel of Mark to our students there. Baigalaa is one of them, a godly sister who serves in children's and women's ministry at her church. Every day of the course she sat at the front of the class, eagerly receiving the word and engaging in group discussion.
Whenever we would come to a break time, Baigalaa would jump out of her seat and angle toward the door. But she wasn't going with others to get tea and coffee, important as those are when you're in class all day long. Instead, Baigalaa would corner us as teachers and ask the questions that were burning in her mind.
"What is the place of rest in the Christian life? Should we keep the Sabbath?"
"Do you think women can be pastors? My denomination doesn't believe this, but others are saying so."
"Is God sovereign over our salvation? How does that affect evangelism and missions?"
"If the call of Christ assumes suffering, and if we have an urgent message, does that mean we should be working hard every day of the week?"
These are just a few of Baigalaa's great questions from the week. And while they're not necessarily the questions we were trying to answer in our study of Mark, they reveal a heart to understand and know God's will. They reveal an eagerness to grow in wisdom and walk in obedience. They reveal a desire to serve with faithfulness.
Good questions like these are one reason why we go to places like Mongolia. And it's students like Baigalaa who excite and energize us as teachers—far more than a good shot of caffeine.