"A Mind Is A Dangerous Thing To Waste"

The author (R. Claire Friend) of this American Thinker article, brings out a very important correlation between third grade reading proficiency and incarceration.

She states: "Though derided by the teachers’ unions as an urban myth, experts in education and corrections have observed a correlation between reading proficiency in the third grade and incarceration." She goes on to say, "The failure to achieve reading proficiency by age 8 or 9 is a warning sign, a marker. Third grade is viewed as a pivotal point. Before third grade, students learn to read. After third grade, they read to learn. Reading proficiency is therefore a critical skill."

The author of this Huffington Post article states that the essence of education is: "The ability to think critically and protect oneself from falsehood and lies." He goes on to say that this ability is today "a lost art" (and indeed it is!). 

He adds the following observation:

"The school owes its students to teach them how to think, not what to think; to question whatever they read, and never to accept any claim blindly; to suspend judgment until they’ve heard all sides of a question, and interrogate whatever claims to be true, since the truth can withstand any scrutiny. Critical thinking is life’s indispensable survival skill, compared to which everything else is an educational frill!"

Aren't the above thoughts similar to those found in Acts 17:10-11? The noble Bereans wanted to make certain that what they were being taught by Paul and Silas, was the truth (John 17:17), and therefore they were engaged in the use of critical thinking skills. As the above author points out, "the truth can withstand any scrutiny" (see article).

The bottom line is this: As concerned parents, we must emphasize to our children, the importance of reading (and the earlier, the better!). Reading and reading comprehension is a necessity in understanding God's word (Ephesians 3:1-4; Ephesians 1:15-18). As stated in the above first paragraph: "Reading proficiency is therefore a critical skill."

Beloved, reading proficiency is so critical, that our children will miss heaven without it! Remember, "a mind is a dangerous thing to waste."

Mike Riley, Gospel Snippets


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