“Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to wrath.”
This applies to our business, our families, and our relationships. Aren’t our relationships a lot like that commercial where we are shouting, “Can you hear me now?” Increased volume does not necessarily correlate to increased understanding. Truth is, sometimes a whisper is louder than a shout.
You’ve probably heard it said that God gave us two ears and one mouth. Use them proportionately.
The problem is we get so busy talking that we fail to listen. If you find yourself justifying your position continually, perhaps you need to stop, take a step back, and just listen.
We are noise junkies. Radio, TV, Phones, CDs, MP3s, etc., etc. Occasionally and regularly turn it all off. Get silent and listen.
Do you take time to listen to God or are you just continually giving Him your wish list? He is speaking to each of us and wants relationship, but that can’t happen without communication. And that can’t happen without listening.
Much of the problem we have in our relationships with each other boils down to lack of listening. If we sincerely listened to each other to the point of understanding and empathy, do you think that would resolve much of the arguments going on at this very moment? Of course it would. The problem we have is that we are wired to defend ourselves, so listening goes out the window when a disagreement occurs.
I am challenging you next time you are headed towards and argument, take a deep breath, step back, and force yourself to be silent…and just listen. Feed back without adding your own spin to clarify that you interpreted what you just heard correctly. What you believe determines what you hear. So, make sure what you believe is true.
You can choose to be right, or you can choose to have relationships. Many people have destroyed not only their own lives, but also the lives of others over this one flaw – insisting on being right. Thus, listening requires us to lay down our rights and consider the other side. I am encouraging you to choose relationship. That starts with listening.