Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. James 1:19
I had a dream the other night that President Trump came to our house for a visit. I don't remember all of the details, but I do remember that he was genuinely interested in what was going on in my life and what I had to say. He not only listened, but he asked questions as well. One thing that great leaders all have in common is their ability to listen. Now don't confuse listening with hearing. Listening describes an intentional activity. In contrast, hearing is something that happens without any cognitive effort. You can hear something even when you don't want to hear it and don't try to hear it. Are you a good listener? Do you really care what others have to say? Do you give others your undivided attention or do you rehearse in your mind what you are going to say next while they are still talking? People can tell whether you really care about them by the way you listen. I believe that most of the problems in this world could be solved if people would talk less and listen more. Obviously this is an age old problem since the word "listen" is mentioned over 500 times in the Bible. I know many Christians who truly want to meet the needs in their community but rarely get out of their 'preacher mode' long enough to listen- to God or to men. In order to know and understand the hurts and pains of those around us, we must learn the art of listening. It is only when we begin to listen that we truly will be able to bring change to our community.
"To those who listen to my teaching, more under-standing will be given, and they will have an abun-dance of knowledge. But for those who are not listening, even what little understanding they have will be taken away from them. That is why I use these parables, For they look, but they don’t really see. They hear, but they don’t really listen or understand." Mat 13:12,13
Pastor Frank Dodson