Class 61: Let Your Education Shine Through (Part 1)
Welcome to Class 61 of “The Ramp” to the Highway of Success course for young women.
I am Daniel Whyte III, president of Gospel Light Society, working in partnership with the Martin Luther King Senior Institute for Young Men & Young Women.
The Institute aims to honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Sr., commonly referred to as “Daddy King”, whom God used to raise the great leader, Martin Luther King Jr. Our purpose is to guide young men and young women, and help them get on the path to becoming kings and queens for the glory of God.
I am your instructor for this course and the author of the ESSENCE Magazine bestselling book “Letters to Young Black Men” and the national bestselling book “Letters to Young Black Women.” My wife, Meriqua Whyte, and my eldest daughter, Daniella Whyte, co-authored “Letters to Young Black Women” with me. My daughter (who has two bachelor’s degrees in psychology and religion and a master’s degree in human services counseling—executive leadership and is now pursuing her second master’s degree in developmental psychology) and her mother, developed the Study Guide. We are using Letters to Young Black Women and its study guide to guide you through this course. This course is for all young women, but especially for young black women and young women of color who oftentimes face disadvantages that others do not. The goal of this class is to help you operate from a position of strength and power based upon the Word of God so you can be victorious in life. My prayer is that this class will empower you to win against your enemies: the devil, sorry men, and even yourself.
Today, we will continue our study, “LET YOUR EDUCATION SHINE THROUGH”.
— Let’s Pray —
Allow me to begin with a quote from Mary McLeod Bethune. She said, “From the first, I made my learning, what little it was, useful every way I could.”
Now, please pull out your text and your digital study guide or follow along on the screen. First, I will read the corresponding letter from the book, Letters to Young Black Women. Then we will proceed with this lesson:
Dear Daughters & YBW:
In this letter, I want to encourage you to let your education shine through. It is amazing to me how one can come out of a four-year institution of higher learning and yet appear to be ignorant and unlearned. Daughters and YBW, here’s how you can let your education shine through:
First, let your education shine through by having a healthy fear of God. Proverbs 1:7 says: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” An educated young black woman will fear God so much so that she will not get puffed up with the knowledge she has. She realizes that without God, she could not have become an educated person.
Second, let your education shine through by walking in humility. Do not think that because you have some education, you know everything there is to know. There is a whole lot more that you will learn in life. The Bible tells us in I Corinthians 8:1 that “Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth.”
Third, let your education shine through in your behavior and dress. Daughters and YBW, know how to act and dress appropriately in any given situation.
Fourth, let your education shine through in your speech. Do not come out of college sounding ignorant. Know what to say, when to say it, and how to say it. We are told in Proverbs 15:2 that: “The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness.”
Fifth, let your education shine through in your writing. Learn how to communicate well on paper.
Sixth, let your education shine through by using the knowledge that you gain for good purposes. Help others and give some of your time to worthy causes.
Seventh, let your education shine through by thinking for yourself. Do not let other people think for you. Size up what every person says to you by God’s Word. Listening to other people, who are not of God, can lead you away from God and cause you to mess up the rest of your life.
Daughters and YBW, let your education shine through and you will be the better for it.
Yours for Letting Your Education Shine,
The fear of God is the foundation of true wisdom. All other forms of learning are meaningless without a firm knowledge of Who God is and an understanding of His will and plan for one’s life.
“Fear” in the context of this verse in Proverbs 1:7 which reads, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction,” takes on several meanings. One is that it means to respect and serve faithful. Second, it means to feel a sense of reverence and adoration for someone who is greater than one’s self. “Fearing” the Lord takes on both of these meanings.
To fear the Lord, we must recognize Him for Who He is. God is mighty, just, loving, omnipresent, and omniscient. He is with us at all times and watching over us at all times whether we can feel his presence or not. Within our spirits, we know this and thus have a continual awareness of Him and deep and abiding reverence for Who He is.
To know God is the height of all knowledge. The verse notes a distinct contrast between those who are wise and those who are foolish. Those who are wise choose to obey the Lord. This means that we are not coerced or forced to do so, but we willingly and in sincere and humble commitment make the decision to obey what He tells us to do. We must follow His will before we follow the will of another no matter if they are a family member, friend, or even a church leader.
We cannot obtain wisdom or true knowledge outside of God because God is the source of all wisdom and good knowledge. It is by Him and through Him that we have this vast world in which there is much to learn. Without a healthy fear of God, we can learn about all of the secular things in this world and probably make a few good choices in the process, but we will miss out on the one thing that separates a truly wise person from a foolish person.
When we don’t fear the Lord, we make decisions based upon human reasoning which is finite and faulty. We also make decisions based upon what other significant people in our lives tell us to do, or reason that we should do, or tell us to do based upon their own finite knowledge and understanding. This does not mean we should not listen to good counsel and hear out the opinions of others. But ultimately, it isn’t about doing what others think is wise in their own eyes or what they deem God wants you to do, it is about seeking the Lord’s face for yourself, fearing the Lord for yourself, and allowing Him to give you His knowledge and wisdom.
When we choose to fear the Lord in every single moment of our live, we begin to make decisions based upon His approval, not man’s approval. We live peacefully in our hearts that God knows everything about us and is involved in our lives. He knows our choices and in the end, we will have to answer for them, not anyone else. When we fear the Lord, we grow in grace, knowledge, and wisdom.
Alan K. Simpson said, “Those who travel the high road of humility are not troubled by heavy traffic.”
In the next class, we will continue our study, “LET YOUR EDUCATION SHINE THROUGH”.
Now, like many of you, I grew up in a very religious and church-going family, and during that time, I often heard the phrase “Being Saved.” Now, much of what church people said “being saved” was back then especially, in my community, is wrong according to the Bible. I wrote an article about it titled “On ‘Being Saved’ in Black America” which is available for you to read free of charge on our website, gospellightsociety.com. Right now, I want to share with you very briefly what the Bible says “being saved” really is.
First, understand that you need to be saved because you are a sinner. Romans 3:23 says, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, understand that a horrible punishment — eternal Hell — awaits those who are not saved. In Matthew 25:41, Jesus Christ said that God will say to those who are not saved, “depart from me ye cursed into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels.”
Third, realize that God loves you very much and wants to save you from Hell. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” If you want to be saved from Hell and be guaranteed a home in Heaven, simply believe in Jesus Christ, that He died, was buried, and rose from the dead for your sins, and then call upon Him in prayer and ask Him to save your soul. And believe me, He will.
Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” That is the most important decision you will ever make.
God bless you and keep you until we meet for our next class.