In wisdom gathered over time I have found that every experience is a form of exploration.
James H. Aughey
This is one of the sad conditions of life, that experience is not transmissible. No man will learn from the suffering of another; he must suffer himself.
Why does man accept to live a trivial life? Because of the danger of a full horizon of experience, of course.
The Denial of Death, Free Press.
Leonardo da Vinci
Wisdom is the daughter of experience.
I stepped from Plank to Plank
So slow and cautiously
The Stars about my Head I felt,
About my Feet the Sea.
I knew not but the next
Would be my final inch —
This gave me that precarious Gait
Some call Experience.
The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson
Ralph Waldo Emerson
All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen.
How many things have to happen to you before something occurs to you?
Nothing ever becomes real till experienced – even a proverb is no proverb until your life has illustrated it.
The marvelous richness of human experience would lose something of rewarding joy if there were no limitations to overcome. The hilltop hour would not be half so wonderful if there were no dark valleys to traverse.
Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.
How you experience your present is completely shaped by what you believe your ultimate future to be.
Thomas a Kempis
That learning which thou gettest by thy own observation and experience, is far beyond that which thou gettest by precept; as the knowledge of a traveler exceeds that which is got by reading.
We were promised sufferings. They were part of the program. We were even told, ‘Blessed are they that mourn,’ and I accept it. I’ve got nothing that I hadn’t bargained for. Of course it is different when the thing happens to oneself, not to others, and in reality, not imagination.
A Grief Observed
Any patch of sunlight in a wood will show you something about the sun which you could never get from reading books on astronomy. These pure and spontaneous pleasures are ‘patches of Godlight’ in the woods of our experience.
John C. Maxwell
Experience isn’t the best teacher—evaluated experience is.
Good Leaders Ask Great Questions, Center Street.
For the believer in Jesus, every trial of suffering is an opportunity to grow in the faith, to grow in our relationship with the Lord, and to see Him work in our lives in a uniquely personal way that demonstrates His compassion, His comfort, His tender mercies, His loving kindnesses, His grace, and His endless love. Only God knows what each of us needs to experience and learn in order to be “conformed to the image of his Son”.
Good judgment comes from experience, and experience – well, that comes from poor judgment.
Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted. And experience is often the most valuable thing you have to offer.
The Last Lecture
Nothing is a waste of time if you use the experience wisely.
We live a long time in order to become lovers. God is like a good parent, refusing to do our homework for us. We must learn through trial and error. We have to do our homework ourselves, the homework of suffering, desiring, winning and losing, hundreds of times.
Radical Grace: Daily Meditations
Sadhu Sundar Singh
During an earthquake it sometimes happens that fresh springs break out in dry places which water and quicken the land so that plants can grow. In the same way the shattering experiences of suffering can cause the living water to well up in a human heart.
“We learn from failure, not from success!”
Erin M. Straza
It takes fresh experiences, surroundings, and inputs for us to see familiar shadows in a new light.
Comfort Detox: Finding Freedom From Habits That Bind You, InterVarsity Press.
The habit of always putting off an experience until you can afford it, or until the time is right, or until you know how to do it is one of the greatest burglars of joy. Be deliberate, but once you’ve made up your mind-jump in.
“Science, my lad, is made up of mistakes, but they are mistakes which it is useful to make, because they lead little by little to the truth.”
A Journey to the Center of the Earth
We had the experiences but missed the meaning.
“The Dry Salvages,” in The Complete Poems and Plays, 1909–1950 (New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1971), 133.
If you can’t get out of it, get into it.
If you are going to be used by God, He will take you through a multitude of experiences that are not meant for you at all, they are meant to make you useful in His hands.
Still Looking for inspiration?
Consider checking out our illustrations page on Experience.