Thursday, May 25, 2017

Becoming an Engaged Listener

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 (NLT)

Are you quicker to listen or to speak?
Do you listen to understand or to respond?

Some of you are excellent listeners. You’re attentive and curious, eager to understand the speaker’s meaning. You sense emotion in body language and empathize with their perspective. Well done!

I don’t always listen well.

My mind sometimes drifts. I envision my to-do list and glance at the clock. I glimpse a friend and remember I have something to give her. I formulate a solution rather than simply affirm your feelings. Can you relate?

While mulling over this scripture and evaluating my listening skills, this quote crossed my Twitter feed. It’s a God-incidence, a jarring thought.

Christians who can no longer listen to one another will soon no longer be listening to God either. – Deitrich Bonhoeffer

If we won’t listen to each other, we’ll soon stop listening to God. (tweet this)

I’ve never considered applying good listening skills to Bible reading.

When God speaks to me in scripture, do I consider His perspective and His intention behind the words? Do I react too quickly, impulsively, defensively, selfishly? Am I fully involved, understanding context and emotion? Or am I checking my to-do list and watching the clock?

We often hear from God by reading scripture. But sometimes we need to dig deeper in study because we can misinterpret God’s message when we don’t understand the context and intent. Good listening is crucial.

Let’s be engaged listeners of God’s Word. (tweet this)

How can you improve your listening skills? Do you think listening better to your friends will help you listen better to God?

#SeedsofScripture #listening #Bible

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