“There is only one rule for being a good talker — learn to listen.” ~ Christopher Morley
It seems that too many people have lost the art of listening. They do not feel that it is important because they do not feel the other person is important. We live in the “world of the entitled.” The only person who is important is “ME”. Anyone else doesn’t really matter. If they don’t matter, why learn to listen.
Yet, it is only in listening that we can learn to see the cues that are given to us by another. When we talk, we have to be willing to listen. We will hear whether or not what we are saying resonates with the listener. We will be able to see whether or not we are making an impact or a difference. We will also be better situated to know if we have lost our audience as well.
When we listen, we listen with our ears and with our eyes. We look for cues that someone is still paying attention. After all, we may have the best message in the world; however, if no one is going to hear us, we may as well sit down and shut up. Only when we listen will we be able to fine tune what it is we are saying.
This holds true for prayer as well. When all we do is talk to God, talk, talk, talk, talk, talk, talk, talk, we do ourselves a great disservice and, I imagine, frustrate God. God wants to listen to us, yes. God wants to hear what we are saying. However, God also wants us to listen to Him. It is only when we go to God in prayer with a heart that listens that we will be able to have a much richer prayer life. Just so, when we go to anyone with a listening heart, we will be able to shape our message so that they will know of our love for them.
Communication is not unidirectional. Communication is bidirectional. Only when we speak to the Lord and listen to the Lord does our conversation with Him bear fruit.
FAITH ACTION: Ask God to give you a heart that listens to others — and to Him — this day.